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Careers and Internships

Student Internships

Ever thought about having a great career dedicated to
  • improving the health and well-being of all Americans?
  • ensuring that we have clean air, pure water and better-protected land?

You can have that career at EPA! EPA internships and fellowships provide a great introduction to our work, giving you a sense of whether EPA might be the right place for you. Internships, fellowships and other opportunities are available at our Washington D.C. headquarters, in our ten regional offices, and at our labs and research centers throughout the nation. Want to learn more about what EPA interns actually do? Read some of their blog posts.

How to Get an Internship at EPA

Paid Internships

EPA Internships Paid by EPA

EPA hires high school and college interns for administrative/clerical positions as well as technical positions in areas such as life sciences, program or policy analysis, and engineering. Most positions have salaries ranging from the GS-2 to GS-7 level. All internships paid by EPA appear in the government-wide USAJobs.gov portal. Most internship opportunities for the summer are advertised in March, April and May but some may be advertised earlier.

  • You can start your search on the USAJobs.gov Students page.

  • You can also view all student jobs, at any agency, across the nation and narrow your search results using the search criteria on the left side of the page.
    • Note that positions are typically open for 1-2 weeks only, so act fast!
    • Locations are all over the nation; check specific listings for location(s).
    • Many positions require at least 640 hours of work (about 16 weeks); check specific listings before you apply to ensure that you can meet all requirements.

  • Paid summer internships.  

    Some positions are designated as “student trainee” or "summer student hire" so try searching for those phrases if you are looking for a summer job. You might also see internships listed under the position descriptions "program support specialist" or "management support clerk." Many positions are only open for a three-day-long application period, so BEFORE you spot a position in which you're interested,

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EPA Internships Paid by Other Organizations

Certain academic institutions and non-profits sponsor and pay for internships, where each intern is assigned to an office in federal government and/or industry. In some instances, the cost is covered by the tuition you have already paid to your college or university. EPA has agreements with the organizations listed below. Note that not all of these organizations place interns with EPA every year:

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Unpaid (Volunteer) Internships

General information for 2014 Internships

2011 intern Jenny Woods will graduating from college with honors with a bachelors degree in Political Science and a minor in Urban Studies and Planning.2011 intern Jennifer Woods heads down one of the longest escalators in the Western Hemisphere to her job in EPA's Office of Sustainable Communities. Learn more about her experience.

Unpaid (volunteer) internships are offered by individual EPA offices in Washington and around the nation. A few offices sponsor well-developed volunteer programs. More commonly, offices do not have centralized volunteer internship coordination; particular managers looking for volunteer help may advertise only through job fairs, college guidance or career planning offices, and/or EPA information sessions at colleges.

If you are interested in an unpaid internship, contact:

  • your college guidance or career planning office, since they may have a partnership with a specific EPA office to provide interns, and
  • EPA offices in which you are particularly interested in working. Use the phone numbers shown on the EPA Organization Chart page. Ask to speak with the volunteer internship coordinator for that office.

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Specific Opportunities for 2014

Please note that the opportunities below have been reported to the EPA Careers webmaster. Many other offices, both at EPA headquarters and around the nation, may have volunteer opportunities available, as described in the General Information section above. Periodically check the information below. Opportunities for work in specific offices will be posted as they open up.

Office of the Administrator:

The Office of External Affairs and Environmental Education and additional program offices within EPA's Office of the Administrator are seeking volunteer interns who are motivated, hard-working and interested in environmental issues. View a list of participating offices and descriptions of internship opportunities within these offices (PDF) (2 pp., 51 KB, about PDF). All Office of the Administrator internships are located at EPA headquarters office in downtown Washington, D.C.

Intern Benefits:
  • Tour of EPA
  • Brown bag lunches with senior staff
  • Field trips to Capitol Hill to see the Administrator and or other senior staff testify before Congress
  • Professional development workshops
  • East Wing Tour of the White House
Requirements:
  1. Prerequisites. Applicants must be:
    • U.S. CITIZENS ONLY, and
    • 18 years of age on or before the first day of the internship, and
    • enrolled at least half-time (e.g., six credits per semester for undergraduates) in an undergraduate or graduate program at a college, community college, or university (two-to-four year institution).
  2. Time commitment. You should expect to work Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Some exceptions will be made if you have class or program requirements, but you will need to work at least 4-1/2 days per week in order to be considered full-time. For example, you could leave at 1:00 p.m. or later, one day each week, and still be considered a full-time intern. If you require a schedule accommodation of this kind, please discuss it if/when an EPA Internship Team member interviews you.

Compensation: The internships are unpaid, however we will provide you with an office phone and computer, as well as a transit subsidy.

Application Schedule:

Office of the Administrator Volunteer Intern Program
Fall 2014
Beginning of Application Period May 23, 2014
Application Deadline July 20, 2014
Notifications Begins the week of July 20, 2014
Start Date September 1, 2014
End Date December 31, 2014

How to Apply: To apply please send your resume, cover letter and EPA office(s) of interest to StudentVolunteer@epa.gov.

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