As part of their high school course requirements, four Palau High School (PHS) seniors, Ms. Fran Jean Dilungil Shiro, Ms. Chelsea Bekelatk Daniel, Ms. Michella Deureng Mutok and Ms. Briana Jade D.N. Takada, have chosen to intern at the Palau International Coral Reef Center. This internship is part of the PHS Career Practicum Program, where the students must work for at least 210 hours.


These four young ladies began their internship on January 16 and are expected to complete their hours by May 4th of this year. Though they are all majoring in Liberal Arts, they chose to intern at PICRC to experience different areas of work at PICRC, as well as learn about environmental science before they go on to college and choosing a career track.

While at PICRC, Ms. Briana Takada will work in the Development Office under the supervision of the Development Coordinator, Ilebrang Olkeriil. Ms. Takada will assist with and learn about the programs and special events that Ms. Olkeriil is organizing at the Center.

On the other hand, Ms. Mutok, who enjoys reading about marine life hopes to further her education after high school, as she plans to attend the University of Hawaii. She plans to major in Marine Biology. Thus, while she is an intern at the Center, she will be mentored by the Aquarium Supervisor, Asap Bukurrou. Her main duties will revolve around aquarium responsibilities such as assisting the aquarists in maintaining the tanks, going out to collect the different species for aquarium display, giving aquarium tours to visitors, and finding creative ways to display Palau’s unique marine ecosystems.

Finally, Ms. Daniel and Ms. Shiro are working in the Research & Aquarium Department under the supervision of the researchers, Adelle Lukes Isechal and Lincy Marino. Both interns are assisting in the department as needed in the offices and during field work as well as learning about the different research projects conducted by PICRC.

All four interns have had the opportunity to work with the staff during PICRC’s education activities leading up to its 16th Anniversary. They helped coordinate school groups, guide school tours in the aquarium to educate students about Palau’s marine ecosystem and supervised the students during fun games and arts & crafts at the mini-carnival booth.

PICRC is happy to host these young interns from PHS and hope that their youthful energy will contribute new ideas to the Center. Through the internship program, interns and students are able to gain valuable work experience, mentorship, and give back to the community. Every year, PICRC hosts students from PHS programs such as Career Practicum Program, Mentoring Program, and Job Shadow to help raise students’ awareness of the marine science field as well as encourage them to become positive and active agents in their community.

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