U.S. nationals: EPA Fellowship in Drinking Water Systems' Consumer Confidence Water Quality Reports

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Washington, D.C., USA 🇺🇸

Organization: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

Reference Code: EPA-OW-OGWDW-2022-02

How to Apply

Connect with ORISE…on the GO! 

Download the new ORISE GO mobile app in the Apple or Google Play Store to help you stay engaged, connected, and informed during your ORISE experience and beyond!A complete application consists of:

  • An application
  • Transcript(s) – For this opportunity, an unofficial transcript or copy of the student academic records printed by the applicant or by academic advisors from internal institution systems may be submitted. All transcripts must be in English or include an official English translation. Click here for detailed information about acceptable transcripts.
  • A current resume/CV, including academic history, employment history, relevant experiences, and publication list
  • Two educational or professional recommendations. Click here for detailed information about recommendations.

All documents must be in English or include an official English translation.

Application Deadline: 5/10/2022 11:59:00 PM Eastern Time Zone


*Applications may be reviewed on a rolling-basis and this posting could close before the deadline. 

Click here for information about the selection process.

EPA Office/Lab and LocationA research opportunity is available at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Water (OW), Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water (OGWDW), Drinking Water Protection Division (DWPD), Protection Branch, located in Washington, DC.

OGWDW, together with states, tribes, and our many partners, protects public health by ensuring safe drinking water and protecting ground water.

Research Project: A critical component of the National Drinking Water Regulations is the right-to-know requirements, including the required Consumer Confidence Reports (CCRs). CCRs, also known as the annual water quality reports, provide valuable information about local drinking water quality to customers of community water systems. The purpose of this project is for the participant to be trained to analyze data, produce presentations and reports based on this data, conduct research and gather best practices regarding communicating information to the public, and identify challenges and strategies for communicating information to the public through CCRs.

Learning Objectives

Under the guidance of a mentor, the participant will: 

  • Research communication and marketing related to risk communication and drinking water.
  • Research “readability”, “understandability”, “clarity”, related to improving CCRs.
  • Identify risk communication best practices, tools, and lessons learned for informing the public.
  • Analyze available data related to CCRs, for example: readership statistics, summary statistics of community water systems, CCR violations, and consumer perceptions.
  • Research ways to improve accessibility of reports for vulnerable populations
  • Identify gaps in electronic delivery strategies for CCRs; as well as options for additional delivery, including websites, email, and social media.
  • Gain an understanding of how evidence is used to inform EPA decision-making processes.
  • Collaborate with technical experts across EPA, and potentially with state and EPA regional and policy staff.

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: Summer 2022. All start dates are flexible and vary depending on numerous factors. Click here for detailed information about start dates.

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

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time.

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).

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


The qualified candidate should have received a bachelor’s or master’s degree in one of the relevant fields (e.g. Public Health, Communication, Marketing), or be currently pursuing one of the degrees with completion by the appointment start date. Degree must have been received within the past five years.

Preferred Skills:

  • Risk communication
  • Research on public policy and/or communication
  • Data analysis
  • Development of executive summaries, fact sheets, and/or presentations
  • Data visualization and presentation

Eligibility Requirements

  • Citizenship: LPR or U.S. Citizen
  • Degree: Bachelor’s Degree or Master’s Degree received within the last 60 months or currently pursuing.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Communications and Graphics Design ()
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences ()
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences ()
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences ()
    • Other Non-S&E ()
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences ()