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CDC Environmental Health Education Fellowship

CDC Office and Location: An Environmental Health Education research opportunity is available within the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) located in Atlanta, GA.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the major operation components of the Department of Health and Human Services. CDC works to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same. CDC increases the health security of our nation. As the nation’s health protection agency, CDC saves lives and protects people from health threats. To accomplish its mission, CDC conducts critical science and provides health information that protects our nation against expensive and dangerous health threats, and responds when these arise.

The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR), based in Atlanta, Georgia, is a federal public health agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. ATSDR protects communities from harmful health effects related to exposure to natural and man-made hazardous substances. We do this by responding to environmental health emergencies; investigating emerging environmental health threats; conducting research on the health impacts of hazardous waste sites; and building capabilities of and providing actionable guidance to state and local health partners.

Research Project: The fellow will learn about human health effects resulting from exposure to toxic substances in the environment and techniques for creating quality information to explain human health risks from environmental hazards using health communication techniques. The fellow will have the opportunity to learn and apply instructional design and adult learning principles in an established national program that provides on-line environmental health education to primary care clinicians. The fellow will also learn how clinicians are supported in delivering environmental risk reduction counseling to their patients. The fellow will be mentored by ATSDR staff professionally prepared and experienced in health education, health risk communication, and environmental health in all aspects of design, development, and delivery of on-line educational programming. Mentor will provide guidance and debriefing during and at completion of assignments.

Activities the fellow will learn from and be mentored in are:

  • How to engage subject matter experts in establishing learning objectives, developing appropriate content, and evaluating learner achievements within educational capacity building interventions
  • Applying instructional design and health communications principles to materials developed for clinicians
  • Procedures for selecting and reviewing literature on environmental and toxicological health topics
  • Drafting educational content that uses adult learning theory and instructional design principles to meet learner objectives in content delivery
  • Processes of collaborating with graphic artists/web designers as needed for production of online educational modules
  • Approaches for developing post tests
  • Data collection for formative evaluation

Learning Objectives: With the assistance of ATSDR mentors, the ORISE Fellow will learn how to:

  • Support the development of educational materials to include ensuring compliance with health education and communication best practices, coordinating production of materials, and ensuring timely public release. 
  • Collaborate with agency employees to assist in coordinating document design, audiovisual production, and web development of section materials.
  • Apply adult learning theory, instructional design principles, and risk communication methods in the development of environmental health educational materials for both primary care clinicians.
  • Synthesize and translate scientific/medical content so that it is understandable and useful for a variety of audiences.

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

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: November 14, 2022.  Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year, but may be renewed upon recommendation of CDC and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time. 

Participant StipendThe participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience.

Citizenship RequirementsThis opportunity is available to U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR), and foreign nationals. Non-U.S. citizen applicants should refer to the Guidelines for Non-U.S. Citizens Details page of the program website for information about the valid immigration statuses that are acceptable for program participation.

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 CDC. Participants do not become employees of CDC, 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.

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 visit our Program 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 have received a master's degree in one of the relevant fields (e.g. Education/Instructional Design, Health Promotion/Education, Public Health, Environmental Health). Degree must have been received within the past five years. 

Preferred Skills/Experience:

  • Academic preparation in public health, environmental health, health communication, adult education, instructional design, or related fields of study.
  • Academic experience in analyzing, designing, developing, implementing, and evaluating health education and health communication capacity-building interventions
  • Strong written and oral capability are priority skills that will facilitate the fellow's learning experience in this fellowship. 
  • Course work desired for the fellow to have is:
  • Curriculum Development and/or Instructional Design
  • Adult Learning Theory
  • Health Promotion/Education Methods
  • Environmental Health
  • Health Communication
  • Public Health