U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service - Directorate Resource Assistant Fellows Program (DFP)

9-3: Wildlife Trade in Social Media Platforms

Region: Headquarters – HQ 9 (DC Metro Area)
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Position Type: Remote (Fellow will complete position from home or alternative worksite and will not be required to report to duty station on a regular basis)
Host site Location: Hadley, MA, Office of Law Enforcement, Hadley SAC Office, 300 Westgate Center Drive, Region 5
Fellowship Dates: Either May 20 - August 9, 2024 or June 16 - September 6, 2024 (with Orientation June 16-21 at NCTC)

Housing Support: Housing stipend up to $5,000 for the entire Fellowship is authorized based on actual expenses incurred. Fellow will be required to provide documentation to validate reimbursement. 

Housing Description: Fellow will be responsible for locating and securing suitable housing.

Valid Driver’s License: Required

Position Description: The Office of Law Enforcement (OLE) Hadley SAC Office is one of the busiest and largest Regions in the OLE program in terms of complexity of issues, number of States, and import and export of wildlife trade responsibilities. The Fellow will be a part of the management team as a special emphasis project lead. This position is important to the OLE and conservation of species (domestic and foreign), and the Fellow will assist OLE in assessing and identifying the gaps and direction of work to combat wildlife trafficking in emerging social media marketplaces. Working with an assigned OLE Wildlife Inspector and Special Agent, the Fellow will:

  • Canvas social media marketplace platforms, such as Facebook marketplace, neighbor, and other social media marketplaces for the sale, offer for sale, and consummated transactions of wildlife (live and products);
  • Document the species, the monetary or trade transactions, the methods of shipping and transport, the place of sale and final destination, and other relevant information for use in informing and guiding OLE's anti wildlife trafficking enforcement in emerging social media markets; and
  • Produce a comprehensive report of findings and possible actions for OLE efforts at the inspection and investigation aspects to combat the illegal wildlife trade at the national program level.

In addition to their core duties, which are remote, the Fellow will have the opportunity to visit ports of entry with Wildlife Inspectors/Agents, conduct informational interviews with U.S. Fish and Wildlife personnel outside of the station and program, job shadow Wildlife Inspectors and Special Agents at Headquarters and the Regional Offices, and have opportunities for additional meetings and trainings as needed or desired.

Minimum Education Level: Open for consideration to undergraduate rising seniors/seniors and graduate students who will not complete their degree requirements before September 22, 2024.

Fields of Study:

  • Biological Sciences
  • Education/Outreach
  • Human Dimensions/Social Sciences/Humanities/Liberal Arts
  • Law Enforcement/Criminal Justice
  • Information Technology/Computer Sciences
  • Computer Science/Business/Economics

Working Conditions Requirements: 

  • While working remotely or while on duty-related travel, the Fellow will require great people skills. Work is mostly on your own pace with check ins and guidance and may require access to OLE systems; confidentiality is required.

Desired Characteristics: 

  • Strong social media and analytic skills
  • Strong people skills
  • Strong internet and computer skills
  • Able to work independently with minimal supervision



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Last modified on 02 October 2023

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