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EPA Internship for Evaluating Strategies for Improving Systemic and Emergent Public Health Challenges

EPA Office/Lab and LocationTwo research opportunities are available at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Research and Development (ORD), Center for Public Health Environmental Assessment (CPHEA), Public Health and Environmental Systems Division (PHESD), located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.

Research Project: The objectives of this solutions-driven research portfolio are to inform and evaluate strategies for improving systemic and emergent public health challenges. In this research we aim to understand the roles, responsibilities, and training needs of different stakeholder groups involved in addressing environmental justice issues. We also aim to provide social science technical assistance to partners by developing and evaluating resources that increase participant knowledge of leading change initiatives and support community partners in evaluating public health change initiatives and interventions.

Through this ORISE Research Opportunity project the research participant may have the opportunity to be involved with and contribute to a range of research activities including: developing data collection instruments, data collection and management, data analysis, publications, and webinar/conference presentations.

Learning ObjectivesDay-to-day activities that the research participant may have the opportunity to contribute to include project management (e.g., assisting to develop and maintain project progress and tracking spreadsheets), developing survey instruments using Qualtrics software, developing interview and focus group guides, assisting with data cleaning and management, analyzing quantitative and qualitative data using current software packages (e.g., R, NVivo, etc.), developing publications and presentations in MS Office.  

Mentor(s)The mentor for this opportunity is Mary Clare Hano ( If you have questions about the nature of the research please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: January 15, 2023. All start dates are flexible and vary depending on numerous factors. Click here for detailed information about start dates.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year and may be renewed upon EPA recommendation and subject to availability of funding.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time. Part-time also considered for current students.

Participant StipendThe participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Click here for detailed information about full-time stipends.

EPA Security ClearanceCompletion of a successful background investigation by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is required for an applicant to be on-boarded at EPA.

ORISE InformationThis program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and EPA. Participants do not become employees of EPA, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.

ORISE offers all ORISE EPA graduate students and Postdocs a free 5 year membership to the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA).

The successful applicant(s) will be required to comply with Environmental, Safety and Health (ES&H) requirements of the hosting facility, including but not limited to, COVID-19 requirements (e.g. facial covering, physical distancing, testing, vaccination).

Questions: Please see the FAQ section of our website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process please email and include the reference code for this opportunity.

The qualified candidate should be currently pursuing or have received a master's degree in one of the relevant fields (e.g. Environmental Health, Public Health, Public Administration, Communication, Community Psychology). Degree must have been received within five years of the anticipated appointment start date.

Preferred skills:
  • Experience participating in an interdisciplinary research team;
  • Data management skills (documentation, organization, cleaning);
  • Experience conducting reviews of peer-reviewed literature and practitioner-oriented resources;
  • Experience in projects related to either health communication, community system change, wildland fire science, or other environmental/public health
  • Proficiency with Microsoft Office applications (i.e., Excel, PowerPoint, Word, Outlook) and strong written, oral, and electronic communication skills