Internships with the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology: 2017–2018

The Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology (BARA) is a unique research institution whose mission is to apply the principles and methods of social science toward the understanding and alleviation of world problems. BARA hosts interns who are in the middle and advanced stages of their undergraduate education or in the early stages of their graduate program, have demonstrated superior ability in their coursework, and wish to apply their knowledge and skills to an actual problem. Internship initiatives are proposed by community leaders who seek to address particular challenges within their organizations and/or communities.

Most internships are offered for academic credit for a full academic year, though some one-semester opportunities are available. Internships are open to students who have at least a junior standing and at least a 3.2 grade point average; excellent writing skills are required as well. Additionally, individuals may hold an internship position in the semester immediately following their graduation. BARA interns work directly with research faculty and post-doctoral researchers and may work individually or on a project team. Within the internship initiatives, internships are tailored to the goals of each individual. Interns gain professional experience and present the results of their work in campus seminars, professional society meetings, and publications. Interns may be employed beyond their internship as warranted by their performance and project requirements.

Click the button on the left to download an application.. For more information on the internship program, contact Kevin Bulletts at the Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology at bulletts@email.arizona.edu.

PLEASE NOTE THAT DUE TO SOME RECENT ADDITIONS TO THE INTERNSHIP OFFERINGS FOR SPRING 2018, THE DEADLINE FOR SUBMITTING INTERNSHIP APPLICATIONS HAS BEEN EXTENDED TO NOVEMBER 27, 2017.

Investigating and Addressing Food Insecurity in Southern Arizona

The Community Food Bank (CFB) of Southern Arizona takes an innovative approach to reducing food insecurity for the more than 50,000 children and families who are at risk for hunger in Southern Arizona. Together with a broad host of partner organizations, the dedicated staff of the CFB brings emergency food relief to thousands of area residents each month. At the same time however, the CFB seeks deeper and longer-term solutions to address the underlying poverty and inequities that generate food insecurity and hunger. As an integral part of its preventative or “shortening the line” work, the food bank is currently transitioning its largest food pantry located in south Tucson into an integrated resource center. This resource center will offer emergency food services in conjunction with programming in the areas of education, civic leadership, direct services, and assistance with accessing governmental assistance programs. In 2017–2018, BARA interns are playing an important role in this transition process by working with CFB and BARA staff to design and carry out a needs assessment of current CFB clients in Tucson and are conducting ethnographic research to learn more about existing services in the area. The information will be combined in order to determine which services would be most needed and utilized at the new resource center. Specific activities include designing and administering questionnaires for CFB clients, engaging with CFB partner organizations located nearby in south Tucson, and evaluating how existing CFB programs, such as the farmer’s markets and gardening program, can enhance programming at the resource center. Interns will present their research findings in a written report as well as a presentation for CFB staff. There is no foreign language requirement for this project, but Spanish speakers will have the opportunity to use their language skills to help us reach as wide an audience as possible.

Assessing and Assisting Community Youth Programs in Tucson

Outside of the typical school curriculum, community youth programs provide supportive learning environments and mentoring to youth, families, and adults throughout Tucson. These programs often serve a vital role in facilitating alternative forms of learning and an increased sense of belonging for members of our community. Since the fall of 2014, BARA researchers and interns have gathered information and built relationships with programs in the Tucson area interested in qualitative participatory assessment of their operations and in addressing specific needs such as the recruitment and retention of volunteers. In 2017-2018, the researchers and interns are working with Owl and Panther, an expressive arts program for refugee families (sponsored by The Hopi Foundation), as part of an ongoing assessment of program assets and needs. BARA researchers and interns also have begun a new partnership with Boys to Men, a community-based mentoring program targeting boys age 12-17 as they travel their journey to manhood.  Interns are needed for the Spring 2018 semester to begin implementing an assessment of the program. Interns will receive training and direct experience in social science research methods and participatory assessment. They will learn how to work with community organizations and build cross-disciplinary connections, take interview and field notes, develop databases and analyze data, and place their research findings in the context of current theories of participation and community engagement. Interns also will participate in community forums and staff/board meetings. They will present their research findings in at least one public forum. There is no foreign language requirement for these projects, but Spanish, Arabic, or French language fluency will be advantageous.

Implementing and Assessing a Cloth Diaper Program in Tucson

The Diaper Bank of Southern Arizona (DBSA) was founded in 1994 as the nation’s first diaper bank. Since its inception, the Diaper Bank has distributed more than 10 million diapers, serving over half a million infants, toddlers, disabled individuals, and seniors, through 53 partner agencies located in 10 counties throughout Arizona. The DBSA also played a key role in the creation of the National Diaper Bank Network (NDBN), a support system for over 250 diaper banks across the country. DBSA, and the diaper bank movement it sparked, has brought attention to a previously ignored health crisis: diaper need. Diaper need is the lack of a sufficient supply of diapers to keep a baby clean, dry and healthy. Health problems stemming from diaper need include diaper rash and urinary tract infections. To address and alleviate diaper need, BARA is working with the DBSA to gather data on the feasibility of a cloth diaper program to help alleviate the financial burden of purchasing disposable diapers. Interns are needed for the Spring 2018 semester to conduct ethnographic research with parents who have chosen to participate in a pilot project. The interns will use the data to develop a survey to better understand the potential for a cloth diaper program. Interns will receive training and direct experience in social science research methods, especially ethnography and survey research. They will learn how to work with community organizations and build cross-disciplinary connections, take interview and field notes, develop databases and analyze data, and place their research findings in the context of current understandings of diaper need. Interns also will present their research findings in at least one public forum. There is no foreign language requirement for this project, but Spanish, Arabic, or French language fluency will be advantageous.