American Water Works Association (AWWA)

Washington, DC, US

Internship Description:

The American Water Works Association (AWWA) is Dedicated to the World’s Most Important Resource™.  We provide knowledge, information and advocacy to improve the quality and supply of water in North America and beyond.  AWWA advances public health, safety and welfare by uniting efforts of the full spectrum of the water community.  Internship is located at AWWA’s Government Affairs Office in Washington, DC and is minutes away from Capitol Hill, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and the White House. 
Congress, the EPA, and other executive branch agencies are the focus of most of AWWA’s governmental affairs efforts. Staff closely coordinate their many activities through the Water Utility Council (WUC) to develop action programs to initiate, evaluate, respond and comment within the framework of Association policy on legislative, regulatory, and other matters which directly affect water utilities. You can read more about AWWA’s Government Affairs Office on our website.
The selected candidate will work on one major project for the duration of the internship. The main objective of the internship is completing a project for AWWA and either:
(1) an associated paper to be submitted to Journal-AWWA for peer review and publication OR 
(2) an internal report and presentation to management to support leveraging tools and resources for more effective advocacy.  
Examples of published papers from previous intern projects are listed at the end of this announcement and can be accessed in full on Journal-AWWA’s website.
The selected candidate will also attend meetings and briefings in the area and assist with other activities to gain an understanding of the breadth of water policy issues covered by this office.  The student will work with AWWA staff on a project that would best fit his or her qualifications. All applicants must briefly discuss one or more potential projects related to water policy they are interested in within their cover letter in order to be considered for the internship.  
Examples of projects ideas include the following:
  • Integrate the work of Mack and Wrase (PLoS ONE, 2017) with previous analyses of barriers to developing regional economies of scale by inter-water system partnerships.
  • Develop and test an Association campaign strategy to advance system customer assistance programs at the local level, documenting barriers to accept and critical factors for success.
  • Develop a business case for use of social media to support advancing water policy by AWWA.
  • Prepare 10 case-studies of utility actions on Lead Service Line Replacements to illustrate the impacts and challenges of such programs and inform anticipated future revision of the Lead and Copper Rule.
The projects listed above are examples. Other water policy projects addressing important water sector issues such as effectiveness of regulations or regulatory processes, water infrastructure financing, affordability of water, climate change, sustainability, water security and preparedness, the water-energy nexus, specific existing or proposed regulations, and others could be considered for the internship depending on qualifications and current drinking water policy needs. 
  • Graduate student pursuing a Master of Science in Environmental Science, Master of Science in Environmental Engineering, and/or Master of Environmental/Public Policy preferred.  Undergraduate students that have completed at least their sophomore year will also be considered. 
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Experience with environmental and/or water policy issues preferred
  • Must be able to work independently with minimal supervision
Wage Information:  Targeted at $19 – $20  Full time work schedule
Deadline to Apply:    5 PM ET, Wednesday March 29, 2017 
Please submit a resume plus cover letter discussing at least one project idea.  Resumes without the other requested information will not be considered.  AWWA staff will review all candidate materials and select a student for this internship.
Past Drinking Water Policy Interns’ Papers
Harnish, L, Carpenter, A.T., and Moran, S. Comparing Water Source Knowledge in Cities that exceed the Lead Action Level (In Press). Journal AWWA. 109:3 (March 2017). 
Lowder, M, and Carpenter A.T. Securing the World’s Water: International Climate Negotiations and Their Impacts. Journal AWWA. 108:11:44 (November 2016).
Ress, E., and Roberson J.A. The Financial and Policy Implication of Water Loss. Journal AWWA. 108:2:E77 (February 2016).
McGavisk, E., Roberson, J.A., and Seidel, C.  Using Community Economics to Compare Arsenic Compliance and Noncompliance.  Journal AWWA.  105:3:E115 (March 2013).
Aubuchon, C.P., and Roberson, J.A.  Price Perception and Nonprice Controls under Conservation Rate Structures.  Journal AWWA.  104:8:33 (August 2012).