EPA Sustainable Waste Management Research Opportunity

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Reference Code
How to Apply

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

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

If you have questions, send an email to EPArpp@orau.org. Please include the reference code for this opportunity in your email.

Application Deadline
6/12/2020 3:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

*Applications will be reviewed on a rolling-basis.

One or more full-time paid opportunities are available with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery (ORCR) in the Arlington, Virginia and Washington, DC area.

ORCR works with state and regional partners to implement the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). Our mission is to protect human health and the environment by ensuring responsible management of hazardous and nonhazardous waste. ORCR's goals are to conserve resources by reducing waste, prevent future waste disposal problems through regulations, and clean up areas where waste may have spilled, leaked, or been improperly disposed.  

The goal of this research project is to study environmental science, economics and/or policy related to waste management and/or recycling. Project(s) will be selected based on the participant's background and interests and would focus on one or more aspects of:

  • hazardous/non-hazardous waste management
  • sustainable materials management
  • life cycle assessment
  • international and transboundary waste issues
  • landfill science and policy issues
  • thermal treatment of waste
  • disposal and treatment of emerging contaminants
  • coal combustion residuals beneficial use and disposal
  • risk assessment and cleanup of contaminated sites
  • environmental justice and tribal issues associated with waste management
  • other topics related to implementation of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act

The selected individuals will collaborate with EPA professionals in conducting research on environmental science, economics and/or policy related to ongoing national or international waste management activities in EPA's Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery.  

As part of this project, the participant will have the opportunity to become familiar with EPA regulatory, guidance, or policy development. The research participant will interact closely with national experts in hazardous waste treatment or management, sustainable materials management, corrective action, or other aspects of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. 

The mentor for this opportunity is David Hockey (hockey.david@epa.gov).

The coordinator for this opportunity is Rachel Horton (Horton.rachel@epa.gov).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: Summer/Fall 2020

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 EPA. The initial appointment is for one year, but may be renewed upon recommendation of EPA and is contingent on the availability of funds. The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. At this time bachelor's degree ~$48K/year, master's degree ~$59K/year, doctoral degree ~$72K/year. Funding may be made available to reimburse the participant’s travel expenses to present the results of his/her research at scientific conferences. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. There are multiple full-time appointments in the Arlington, Virginia, and Washington, DC, area. Participants do not become employees of EPA, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits.

Completion of a successful background investigation by the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is required for an applicant to be on-boarded at EPA.


The qualified candidate should have received a bachelor's, master's or doctoral degree in one of the relevant fields, or be currently pursuing one of the degrees and will reach completion by the start date of the appointment. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date.

Preferred skills:

  • Strong experience and/or education related to environmental science, economics, or policy
  • Strong communications skills- ability to communicate complex issues both in writing and verbally
Eligibility Requirements
  • Citizenship: U.S. Citizen Only
  • Degree: Bachelor's Degree, Master's Degree, or Doctoral Degree received within the last 60 months or anticipated to be received by 8/31/2020 11:59:00 PM.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Communications and Graphics Design (2 )
    • Earth and Geosciences (23 )
    • Engineering (27 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (13 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (47 )
    • Other Physical Sciences (12 )
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (32 )
  • Veteran Status: Veterans Preference, degree received within the last 120 month(s).