Are you a dedicated fisheries professional interested in inspiring young people while diversifying the profession?

Since the Hutton Program began in 2001, over 750 mentors from 234 host institutions have taken part in the Hutton Program. AFS is always looking for enthusiastic and dedicated mentor applicants who are willing to introduce high school students to the dynamic world of fisheries science.

Hutton Program Host Locations and Eligibility:

Federal, state and local agencies, private companies, academic and research institutes serve as Hutton Program host organizations by enabling and encouraging employees to serve as Hutton Mentors. Interested Hutton Mentors must work in the fisheries or aquatics profession and/or in marine biology.

Thank you to our 2020 host agencies, organizations and institutions:

  • Bureau of Land Management (BLM)
  • US Forest Service (USFS)
  • University of Wisconsin-Green Bay
  • Idaho Department of Fish and Game
  • Texas Parks and Wildlife Department
  • Bluewater Springs State Fish Hatchery

Hutton Mentors:

  • Volunteer to work alongside and mentor his/her matched Hutton Scholar for a full eight weeks over the summer
  • Ensure the future of the profession by introducing young people to the exciting world of fisheries science
  • Educate students about the importance of aquatic systems and other critical conservation issues
  • Have a positive influence on the next generation of leaders
  • Inspire others to pursue an important and rewarding career

Mentors are allowed and encouraged to co-mentor with other fisheries professionals in the same or another host organization, in order to give students a broad view of the many dimensions of fisheries science.

We welcome mentor applicants from municipal, state, federal, provincial, tribal, university, private, and non-governmental facilities in all states, commonwealths, and territories of the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

Being a Hutton Mentor:

The principal goal of the Hutton Program is to stimulate interest in pursuing fisheries science and aquatic resources management careers among high school students. We aim to recruit and select students from groups underrepresented, specifically minorities and women, in the fisheries professional today.

AFS staff makes it easy to be a Hutton Mentor. We handle all logistics and administrative responsibilities, such as:

  • Recruiting students
  • Managing the student application and selection processes
  • Matching mentors to selected students
  • Disbursing scholarship payments to students
  • Providing mentoring best practices, guidance and administrative support to mentors

Guidance on creating an appropriate project for a high school student and sample project descriptions from previous mentors can be provided upon request. We strongly encourage mentor applicants to recruit qualified student applicants from their local high schools. 

Mentor Match:

Students selected for the Hutton Junior Fisheries Biology Program are matched with a mentor within commuting distance (within a 45-mile radius) and will receive notification from the Educational Programs Coordinator. AFS staff will notify mentors of their student matches after the AFS Hutton Committee reviews all student application and finalize the mentor-student matching processes.

Selected students are matched with a mentor in their local area for an eight-week internship in a fisheries setting. Among the many activities that “Hutton Scholars” may assist with include:

  • Stream sampling
  • Seining
  • Electrofishing
  • Fish tagging and tracking
  • Ecosystem restoration
  • Public education
  • Angler surveys
  • Laboratory analyses of fish to determine age and growth

Program Requirements:

Mentors selected for the Hutton Junior Fisheries Biology Program are expected to accomplish ALL requirements of the program.

  • Mentor (s) and student(s), parent or guardian, are required to meet before the internship start date to discuss duties, responsibilities, and the summer schedule.
  • In order to participate, Mentors must return to the AFS Hutton Program an acceptance form signed by the student, parent or guardian, and mentor.
  • Complete and submit students’ bi-weekly timesheets, signed by student and mentor. It is recommended that mentors submit a brief overview the student’s two-week period.
  • Complete a final report and program evaluation once the internship is finished

Program Stipulations:

This is a paid summer internship for high school students. Funding comes directly from The American Fisheries Society through our generous funding partners. The Hutton paychecks are not considered wages for tax purposes; therefore, no W-4 form needs to be completed by the student when he or she begins the program, and no taxes are withheld. However, student paychecks are considered taxable income according to IRS regulations. Students are advised to consult IRS regulations regarding scholarships.

AFS provides liability insurance for students and mentors who participate. Forms and instructions are provided to the mentor.

It may become necessary for students to spend time overnight at a distant site with their mentors. Parental permission must be obtained by the mentor in advance of the trip, preferably with blanket permission for the entire summer.