U.S. nationals: Protect Public Health Through Drinking Water Policy and Data Analysis

Washington, DC, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
Experience Level: 
Not Specified
Degree Required: 
Bachelor's (Or Equivalent)


Please note: this job post has expired! To the best of our knowledge, this job is no longer available and this page remains here for archival purposes only.


A postgraduate internship project is available at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Water in Washington, DC. The internship will be served with the Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water (OGWDW) in the Standards and Risk Management Division (SRMD) in Washington, DC.

The SRMD is the focal point at EPA for developing national policy in support of the Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA). SRMD’s goal is to protect public health by ensuring safe drinking water through executing the regulatory process for drinking water contaminants. This process includes monitoring the extent of non-regulated contaminants in drinking water systems, establishing new standards for drinking water constituents, reviewing existing drinking water regulations, developing technical information to support drinking water standards and providing technical assistance on drinking water issues.

The participant will have the opportunity to gain experience on a project that is part of an overall strategy to protect our nation's drinking water. This is an exciting opportunity to gain hands-on experience on SDWA topics and the process for developing new and evaluating existing drinking water policies and supporting science. The participant will have the opportunity to learn about many different topics including health effects, treatment technologies, economic impact and geographic scope of high profile emerging drinking water contaminant topics such as cyanotoxins, Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS), lead and copper, perchlorate, Legionella and other opportunistic pathogens. The participant will have the opportunity to be trained with a dynamic, results-driven multi-disciplinary team that includes staff with expertise in biology, chemistry, engineering, statistics and health science.

The participant will have the opportunity to be involved and trained in the following team activities:

  • scientific analyses, regulatory policy evaluations and economic analysis as interest allows;
  • developing documents/reports/papers on drinking water topics of national significance;
  • executing parts of EPA’s drinking water regulatory development and review process including problem identification, health risk/exposure analysis and assessing risk mitigation approaches.

The participant will gain experience in technical writing, risk analysis, communication, strategic planning and project management. He/she will learn aspects of the Safe Drinking Water Act, EPA's drinking water regulatory process and develop a deeper understanding of the issues that face drinking water systems; and how to coordinate outreach efforts and to share pertinent information with external stakeholders.

This program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education, was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and EPA. For additional information about this program, please visit https://orise.orau.gov/epa/.

The appointment is full time for one year and may be renewed upon recommendation of EPA and contingent on the availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend. The annual stipend will range from $45,972 up to $68,036, depending on degree level and prior experience. Funding may be made available to reimburse the participant’s travel expenses to present the results of his/her research at scientific conferences. No funding will be made available to cover travel costs for pre-appointment visits, relocation costs, tuition and fees, or participant’s health insurance. The participant must show proof of health and medical insurance. The participant does not become an EPA employee.

The mentor for this project will be Katherine Foreman ( ). The desired start date is June 15, 2018.


Applicants must have received a bachelor's, master's, or doctoral degree in an environmental, biological, chemical or physical science, statistics, engineering, health or public health, or public policy within five years of the start date, or have completed all degree requirements prior to the start date.