Student jobs on Nechako White sturgeon conservation to come with Rio Tinto support

Students will have the opportunity to earn valuable work experience while helping support the Nechako White Sturgeon

Students across the Nechako Lakes school district released over 500 baby sturgeon at Riverside Park on May 13

Students across the Nechako Lakes school district released over 500 baby sturgeon at Riverside Park on May 13

Interns and summer students will have the opportunity to earn valuable work experience while helping support the Nechako White Sturgeon Recovery Initiative, thanks to a partnership between Rio Tinto and the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC. The two year commitment means the Freshwater Fisheries Society will be able to hire two interns and two summer students to assist with operations at the Conservation Centre, in both 2017 and 2018.

The Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC operates the Nechako White Sturgeon Conservation Centre in Vanderhoof. The Conservation Centre, designed to produce up to 12,000 young sturgeon each year from wild Nechako sturgeon adults, is key to the survival of the of the Nechako white sturgeon.

“We are proud to build on our support for the Nechako White Sturgeon Recovery Initiative, as part of Rio Tinto’s commitment to projects and partnerships that benefit local communities,” said Rio Tinto general manager BC Works Gareth Manderson.

“The BC Freshwater Fisheries Intern and Summer Student Program will provide an opportunity for local people to gain education and experience in a field that is very important for this community.”

The employment program will focus on the Nechako White Sturgeon Recovery Initiative objectives of conservation, research, monitoring and education, while creating opportunities for local employment in Vanderhoof.

“Thanks to the commitment from Rio Tinto, four young adults will be given an opportunity to gain new on-the-job skills while improving delivery of programs for Nechako white sturgeon,” said Cory Williamson, Hatchery Manager, Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC.

“Part of ensuring the survival of the Nechako white sturgeon is ensuring people have opportunities for valuable hands-on experience.

This ensures there will be future generations of sturgeon a well as future generations of specialists to be stewards.”

The interns and summer students will provide additional support for brood capture, rearing, tagging, and tracking of white sturgeon and ongoing habitat research projects.

They will also facilitate stewardship and educational programs, and will deliver Conservation Centre tours.

Interested applicants should watch for the job postings on the Freshwater Fisheries Society of BC’s website, gofishbc.com in early March.

The Nechako White Sturgeon Conservation Centre opened in 2014 with the help of a 10 year commitment from Rio Tinto towards operational costs, and 2017 will mark the third year that juvenile sturgeon will be released from the facility.