Andrew Herrera, John Curnyn 

Ramapo College "May H Weis Environmental Award" Internships

The award was established In 1984, with a generous donation in May Weis’ memory by her son, Leonard W. Weis, Ph.D. It is a joint program between Ramapo and The New Weis Center  "My mother was a graduate of Barnard College in 1912,” writes Dr. Weis. “She and my father always stressed that no one can ever take one’s education away, which is why it is so valuable.”  May Weis represented the Women’s Alliance of the American Ethical Union at the United Nations and always had an interest in the care of the environment.


The two recipients of the May H. Weis Award will participate in a PAID internship from June 2021-May 2022 at the Center, and receive a FULL TUITION SCHOLARSHIP for one semester at Ramapo College. During their internship, they will receive training to work as environmental educators and nature camp counselors, plus additional responsibilities as outlined here. Applicants must be full time undergraduate or graduate students at Ramapo College.


> Ramapo College May H. Weis Internship Award: Requirements and Responsibilities


Applications MUST be submitted via the Ramapo College website. The next application cycle opens in early 2022. Please do not email or call The New Weis Center to apply.



CURRENT 2021-2022 "May H Weis Environmental Award" Interns:


Mikayla Bivona

Mikayla is an Environmental Science major at Ramapo College, where she maintains a 3.79 average. Her previous work experience includes positions as a soccer coach, a sous chef, and a photo editor and photographer. During the pandemic she founded her own business, working as a commissioned artist and photographer focusing on natural portraits, wildlife, and landscapes. She is on the College's Women's Soccer Team, and is also active in community organizations including Pass It Along, Rivers Edge Horse Rescue & Sanctuary, Challenger Soccer, and Tap into Sparta. Mikayla feels her education in Environmental Science has revolutionized the way she enjoy the outdoors, and helped her learn to note small details while gaining a basic understanding of what's happening around her. She hopes this internship will help her advance her career objectives through invaluable experience in the outdoor education field, and she looks forward to the challenges and the opportunity to work alongside professionals in the field. She is certified in First Aid & CPR/AED, and will serve as a nature camp counselor and environmental educator during her year-long internship at our Center.


Charlene Trippeda

Charlene is an Environmental Science/Plant Studies major at Ramapo College where she maintains a 3.74 average. Her previous work experience includes positions as a Teacher's Aid with Bergen County Special Services and as a sales associate for Athleta. She is active in many clubs and organizations at the college, including Ramapo Admissions Student Ambassador, Ramapo Leaders in Service Peer Mentor, Garden Club and 1STEP. She also finds time for volunteer work, which has included assisting at MEVO Farms, tutoring, and cleanups with Hackensack Riverkeepers. Charlene hopes this internship will expose her to new situations and experiences, and help her grow as a person and in define her future career path. She is certified in First Aid & CPR/AED, and will serve as a nature camp counselor and environmental educator during her year-long internship at our Center.




PREVIOUS Ramapo College "May H Weis Environmental Award" Interns


Annie Ortlieb

Annie is an Environmental Science major at Ramapo College, who has found her passion for nature, agriculture and sustainability through her previous work, along with her journey through environmental college courses. She has experience working at Secor Farms in Mahwah, NJ and she was a summer camp counselor from 2014-2019 at the Mahwah Summer Rec program. Annie is the student representative on the Tree Campus USA committee coming to Ramapo College. She hopes to make an impact on environmental policy change in her future. In her free time she enjoys hiking, cooking and spending lots of time outdoors.


Allie Hapunik

Alli is an Environmental Studies major at Ramapo College. She is an experienced ocean lifeguard and interned as a gardener at the NJ Botanical Gardens in Ringwood. In summer 2019, Alli spent a semester studying marine ecosystems in Turks and Caicos islands. Alli is also a starting defense player for the Ramapo College Women's Lacrosse Team. Her future career goals include coral restoration and environmental education. She hopes that her future plans in the field contribute to the fight against environmental injustices. During her free time Alli enjoys boating, working out and being at the beach, and is pursuing her captain's license during the summer of 2021!



Scott Campbell - (2019-2020 Intern Educator/2019 Camp Counselor)
Scott is a familiar face to many visitors, as he was a volunteer intern in summer 2018, and worked at our Center as a part-time educator in the fall of 2018 before being chosen for the May H. Weis Award. He graduated from Ramapo College of NJ with an Environmental Science degree, with a minor in Plant Studies. Scott's past work experience includes positions at Eden Farms and Rohslers Nursery. Scott's interests include hiking, mushroom foraging and fishing, as well as edible/medicinal plants, entomology and herpetology. Aside from all his nature related hobbies and interests, Scott is a guitarist and enjoys writing music. Scott currently works for Passaic County NJ Parks and Recreation as a Park Ranger. We are happy to welcome Scott back to Weis in 2021 as a part-time Environmental Educator!


Cory Fichtenbaum - (2019-2020 Intern Educator/2019 Camp Counselor)

Cory is an environmental Studies major at Ramapo College of NJ. He is dedicated to environmental preservation and sustainability and is passionate about the outdoors, fishing and cars. Cory has held previous positions at Greens Do Good Farm and the Meadowlands Environmental Center, and was a Counselor at NJ Y overnight camp. Cory's community service positions include a spring break trip to New Orleans for a wetland restoration project and a summer in Costa Rica working with Habitat for Humanity. He is certified in First Aid & CPR/AED as well as in Mental Health First Aid.



Jazmine Garcia - (2018-2019 Intern Educator/2018 Camp Counselor)
Jazmine is an Environmental Studies graduate (minor in Plant Studies) from Ramapo College of NJ. She was President of the Garden Club at Ramapo College as well as the Ramapo Green gardener for the summer of 2018. She previously interned at the MEVO farm (Mahwah Environmental Volunteer Organization) in Mahwah, NJ, where she experienced farm life and helped educate new volunteers about the farm. Jazmine loves being part of a welcoming community with a strong passion for sustainability and environmental protection. During her time at Weis she enjoyed engaging with the community and helping children (of all ages) learn about and connect with nature. The internship helped her strengthen her environmental advocacy skills and learn more about native and invasive plant and animal species. She served as our 2018 Summer Nature Camp Co-Health Director, and recently joined our Board of Trustees!


Stephen Stella - (2018-2019 Intern Educator/2018 Camp Counselor)

Stephen graduated from Ramapo College NJ with a Law & Society major at Ramapo College, NJ. He was inspired to join our team after reading about our educational programs that teach young people about the beauty of our natural environment. He believes these programs are vital for an environmentally responsible society, and feels if more youth were exposed to the natural world, then surely the next generation will cherish nature for the wonder that it is. As an Eagle Scout, he firmly believes in the principles of protecting and preserving our environment, and hopes to develop a career in property and environmental law, to help conserve our outdoor spaces. In his free time he is an avid hiker, and rears Eastern Hercules Beetles (Dynastes Tityus) which he finds fascinating. After finishing his year-long internship at Weis, he continued to work with us as a part-time educator for several seasons. He is currently in the graduate program at Rutgers University's PAMBA program and is scheduled to graduate in summer 2022



Liam Hickey (2017-2018 Intern Educator/2017 Camp Counselor)
Liam Hickey interned at Weis as an Environmental Science major at Ramapo College, with previous experience as a Counselor and Head Counselor for 5 summers at the Dumont, NJ Summer Rec program, where he supervised campers and other Counselors, and planned activities and events. He also worked as a Land Surveyor and Theater Assistant. Liam is active in community service and was a member of Ramapo’s 1Step club, which works to help further the 'Ramapo Green' initiative. An avid hiker and backpacker, Liam enjoys photography and says being in nature is his favorite thing, Liam enjoyed sharing his enthusiasm for nature with others during his year at Weis. He is First Aid and CPR certified.

James O'Neil (2017-2018 Intern Educator/2017 Camp Counselor)
James O’Neill interned at Weis as an Environmental Studies/Biology major at Ramapo College. His previous experience included working at Camp Bernie as an overnight counselor and wilderness survival instructor. He also worked for Clean Water Action, was a teacher's assistant at the Meadowlands Environment Center, and managed Ramapo’s on-campus gardens and greenhouse. James has always been passionately interested in nature, and enjoys connecting with younger generations and learning from them as they learn from him.



Andrew Herrera (2016-2017 Intern Educator/2016 Co-Camp Director)
Andrew interned at Weis while pursuing an environmental studies major at Ramapo College.  He is first aid certified and served as a Weis Co-Camp Director in summer 2016. Andrew volunteered at an animal sanctuary in Costa Rica in January 2015, and participates in Big Brothers Big Sisters at Ramapo College. Andrew's previous experience included  working at summer camps, including the Parsippany Recreation Department's summer "Tot Time" program (2010-2014). He was happy to have an opportunity to share his enthusiasm for wildlife and the environment with campers and students while at Weis. In the future, he hopes to study abroad to augment his education in environmental science and stewardship.

John Curnyn (2016-2017 Intern Educator/2016 Co-Camp Director)
John interned at Weis while pursuing an environmental studies major at Ramapo College. John is first aid, wilderness first aid, and wilderness first responder certified. He previously worked at Spring Lake Day Camp as an adventure specialist. John attended the spring 2015 semester with the National Outdoor Leadership school in Utah and Wyoming, learning to lead outdoor activities including backpacking, white water kayaking, climbing and horse packing. John says that experience helped him see outdoor education as a viable career option, and inspired him to work towards that goal. John grew up in Ringwood, NJ, and fondly remembers visiting the former Weis Ecology Center on school trips. During his internship at Weis he worked to pass on his many outdoor skills and environmental studies knowledge to campers and visitors, and continued with us as a part-time educator for another year before moving to Wyoming, where he worked at Teton Valley Ranch Camp where he was a backpacking trip leader throughout the greater Yellowstone ecosystem. He moved on to be an outdoor educator at Teton Science School.



Read more about some of the people behind the success of The New Weis Center!


Meet our dedicated, knowledgeable Staff


Meet our hardworking Board of Trustees


Meet some of our wonderful Volunteers​​

Annie Ortlieb & Allie Hapunik

We offer opportunities for both paid and unpaid internships, as noted below

Liam Hickey, James O'Neill​​

Jazmine Garcia, Stephen Stell​a​

Seasonal Internships

Applications for the Seasonal Internships below will be accepted on a rolling basis until the positions are filled. These are volunteer/unpaid positions.


Fall 2021: Environmental Education Internship

Starts in September; flexible start/end dates. Minimum commitment: 100 hours (approx 13 weeks, average of 7-8 hrs/wk)

Assist with outdoor nature-based programs, including afterschool & homeschool, seasonal day camps, field trips, public programs, scout badges, volunteer days and special events. Candidates should love being outdoors and be able to hike several miles. May also work on land stewardship projects, including invasive species management, gardens and grounds.


Fall 2021-Spring 2022: Marketing & Program Administration

Starts in September; flexible start/end dates. Minimum commitment: 100 hours (approx 13 weeks, average of 7-8 hrs/wk)

Assist with marketing and outreach responsibilities; help plan and execute special events; handle administration functions for programs and special projects. May also work on land stewardship projects, including invasive species management, gardens and grounds. Work directly with our Center's Director and learn the behind-the-scenes workings of a growing grassroots nonprofit. 



Many of our seasonal interns are students seeking to fulfill a required college field internship. We also welcome volunteer interns of all ages looking to gain nonprofit experience, prepare for a career (or career change), and make a difference at a successful, growing organization.


Interns are involved in many aspects of our organization, and we strive to ensure they have a rewarding and productive experience. In addition to the specific internship duties, they may help with the restoration and conservation of our 152-acre property, including gardening and invasive species identification and removal.​​ Additional benefits:

  • Training and professional development opportunities provided
  • Flexible scheduling, including weekends
  • References and recommendations for future internships and jobs may be provided upon completion
  • Internships are unpaid, except for the May H. Weis Award for Ramapo College students (see below)


Enthusiasm, motivation, attention to detail, good communication (in person and digitally), and a desire to learn are required for ALL internship positions!



​TO APPLY: Email a current resume and cover letter to the Director Anne Siebecker's attention:  info@highlandsnaturefriends.org

  • If more than one internship is open, please indicate which one(s) you are interested in
  • Be sure to include how you heard about the internship



Please Contact Us for more information or to schedule a site visit.



Annie Ortlieb & Allie Hapunik

Cory Fictenbaum, Scott Campbell

INTERNSHIPS