Reef Doctor Research Assistant & Divemaster Internship

The Research Assistant and Divemaster Internship is on offer for those looking to make a greater time commitment to Reef Doctor. This position allows people with a keen interest in tropical marine conservation, but with limited experience, to gain their first steps in this exciting, yet demanding work field. We offer 6 month internship positions, suitable for both non divers and qualified divers with the possibility to stay longer for another 6 months upon invitation by Reef Doctor in a staff position.

Following an intensive science training period (~3 months), interns help the core project staff with the marine research programme, training and management of Reef Doctor EcoDivers and Research Assistants, and general camp duties. The interns will also be trained to become PADI Divemasters following completion of the science training.

The position allows Divemaster interns to use their own experiences and qualifications to concentrate on particular Reef Doctor objectives, from the marine research and management side to education or socio-economic development work, allowing them to gain work experience tailored to their future career and personal development requirements.


Please download our Research Assistant & Divemaster Internship Programme Guide for further information and photos:

Research Assistant & Divemaster Internship Programme Guide


What you can expect to undertake as a Reef Doctor Intern:

     PADI dive training; Open Water, Advanced, EFR, and Rescue certification (within the first 2 months).

     Intensive science training: marine science lectures, species identification (basic to expert level), habitat surveying and data management (within the first 3 months).

     Following completion of training period, undertake coral reef scuba surveys and assist with other Reef Doctor marine research, management, and conservation projects.

     Train to PADI Divemaster level (after the first 3 months).

     Assist Reef Doctor’s Dive Officers in the daily operation of the dive shop and diving schedules.

     Train Reef Doctor EcoDivers and Research Assistants in species identification, habitat surveying and data entry.

     Assist with science report writing.

     Help create information packages / leaflets / posters etc. to relay our projects, findings and news to the local stakeholders, NGOs, government ministries and institutions.

     Experience working with local communities in a developing country. Help create educational packages / leaflets / posters on the marine environment for local school children and community members.

     Create Reef Doctor newsletter and blogs.
     Enjoy exploring the local area; the popular beach resort of Mangily, the Spiny Forest, take a pirogue trip across the Bay or visit one of the local National Parks (in your free time, at your own expense).


Reef Doctor Research Assistant and Divemaster Internship Start Dates









Reef Doctor Research Assistant and Divemaster Internship Fees





Services included in Internship Fee:

  1. Airport pick-up in Toliara and transport to the Reef Doctor site in Ifaty
  2. Arrangement of hotel in the capital city Antananarivo, if required, includes free pick up by hotel from airport.
  3. All meals, Monday to Sunday.
  4. Filtered water, coffee, and tea.
  5. Lodging: shared bungalows with bed sheets, pillows and mosquito net provided.
  6. First-aid medical care.
  7. Electricity for charging cell phones, laptops, etc. and limited internet connection.
  8. Dive training, certification fees and PADI materials for ALL PADI Open Water, Advanced, Rescue, EFR, Divemaster courses.
  9. PADI dive instruction manuals and PIC cards for all courses.
  10. Project equipment and educational materials: dive slates, paper, pens etc., all required for your working activities.
  11. Dive equipment, including: Buoyancy Control Device (BCD), full regulator set, weights and tanks.
  12. Occasional excursions to help some of our conservation partners in the area, such as HONKO (mangrove conservation and re-plantation).
  13. Science training.
  14. Pre-departure support and pre-departure guides: advice on flights, equipment, Madagascar, medicals, vaccines, insurance etc.
  15. UK based support/communication throughout the expedition for the intern’s friends and family.
  16. Fuel, equipment and in-country personnel to make this all happen!


Services NOT included in Internship Fee

  1. Round-trip airfare.
  2. Visa.
  3. Diving, travel and medical insurance and cost of vaccines.
  4. Reef Doctor standard recreational dive medicals (forms provided by us to be filled in by a medical professional may incur a fee).
  5. All interns must bring their own wetsuit, mask/snorkel, fins and booties, time piece and/or dive computer, weight belt.
  6. Any personal excursions (often groups of volunteers and staff plan excursions to nearby national parks or other areas of interest).
  7. Anti-malaria drugs.
  8. PADI Divemaster Membership fee (£80).

Reef Doctor has six intern positions per expedition, three times a year. To find out if you are eligible to become a Reef Doctor intern please fill in our Volunteer Questionnaire  and send it along with your C.V to If you have any questions, we’ll be happy to answer on +44 (0) 7866 250 740.