CDC Disease Surveillance Internship

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Reference Code
How to Apply

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A complete application consists of:
  • An application
  • A current resume/CV, including academic history, employment history, relevant experiences, and publication list
  • One educational or professional recommendation. Your application will be considered incomplete, and will not be reviewed until one recommendation is submitted.

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

Application Deadline
3/30/2022 3:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

*Applications will be reviewed on a rolling-basis.

CDC Office and LocationA fellowship opportunity is currently available in the Surveillance and Data Branch, Division of Health Informatics and Surveillance (DHIS), Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory Services (CSELS), at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia.

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.

Research Project: Our mission at DHIS is to provide leadership and cross-cutting support in developing public health information systems, managing public health surveillance programs, and provisioning health related data required to monitor, control and prevent the occurrence and spread of diseases and other adverse health conditions. Under the guidance of a mentor, the research participant will learn how to conduct activities focused on enhancing the capacity of the branch to utilize public health information systems, case-based and syndromic surveillance programs, and health-related data to help inform public health decisions, resource needs/utilization, and response efforts for the agency and local/state public health partners. The research participant will have the opportunity to assist staff in supporting case-based and/or syndromic-based data collection, management, analytics and report dissemination—and will learn about data surveillance and tools used to support data processing, design, query, quality, and analytics. 

Learning Objectives: Under the guidance of a mentor, the participant may be involved in the following training activities: 

  • design, evaluate and improve upon methods used to collect, process, analyze and integrate new and existing surveillance data sources that are managed by the branch
  • utilize statistical programming software (SAS, R, SQL, etc…) to manage surveillance data (i.e. “big data”) from a variety of data sources (electronic health records, laboratory data, reportable disease data, etc…) using relational databases
  • develop data subsets as needed and conduct descriptive statistics/analyses for the purposes of improving data quality and usability for CDC programs and public health partners
  • train CDC program staff and other public health partners on the use of surveillance data and systems via written materials and oral presentations
  • help identify novel surveillance data sources and analytic tools, including associated strengths and weaknesses
  • develop databases queries and reports in collaboration with CDC programs and/or other public health partners
  • develop Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) as needed for revised or new processes
  • perform other projects within the branch as needed related to case-based and/or syndromic-based surveillance data processes, from case/syndrome definition development to message mapping guide development to data management/analytics to reporting/communication needs
  • utilize R Studio specially building apps (and using Shiny would be an added bonus)

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

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: January 31, 2022. Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment Length: The 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 Participation: The appointment is full-time.

Participant Stipend: The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience.

Citizenship Requirements: This 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 Information: This 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 bachelor's or master's degree in epidemiology, public health, data science, biostatistics, health informatics or mathematics, or be currently pursuing one of the degrees with completion by May 31, 2022. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date.

Preferred skills:

  • Knowledge of and experience using statistical software programs to perform data queries, management and analyses (SAS, SQL, R, etc…)
  • Experience with “big data” using relational databases (SAS, SQL, R, etc…)
  • Strong written and oral communication skills, with an emphasis on delivering technical information to a variety of audiences
  • Knowledge of public health/epidemiologic concepts and familiarity with surveillance data and programs
  • Experience with R Studio specially building apps and Shiny would be an added bonus! 
Eligibility Requirements
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree or Master's Degree received within the last 60 months or anticipated to be received by 5/31/2022 11:59:00 PM.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences (1 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (4 )
    • Mathematics and Statistics (4 )