EPA Recreational Use of Natural Areas Data Analysis Internship

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

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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
10/1/2020 3:00:00 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 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Office of Research and Development (ORD), Center for Public Health Environmental Assessment (CPHEA), Public Health and Environmental Systems Division (PHESD), Epidemiology Branch located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina.

Research Project: The research participant will have the opportunity to participate in research related to understanding human uses of natural areas using emerging human-mobility datasets, social media and other digital traces of human behavior. The research includes: synthesis and visualization of spatial datasets, development of innovative models and methods to quantify people’s uses of natural areas, quantifying how environmental quality affects those uses, and understanding impact on community wellbeing.

With guidance from their mentor, the research participant will have the opportunity to learn about developing, managing, and analyzing spatial datasets; analyzing and reporting on social and environmental conditions of natural areas; scripting data management processes, and collaborating on scientific writing and presentations. The data resulting from this research will be made publicly available through EnviroAtlas and this project will provide an opportunity to interact with the EPA's EnviroAtlas Team and learn about the application of social and ecological spatial data in EnviroAtlas.

Learning Objectives: The research participant will have the opportunity to learn through interactions with individuals and teams working on other cross-cutting human/environment projects at PHESD and other EPA divisions. With guidance from the mentor, the research participant will have latitude in exercising independent initiative and judgment in the research commensurate with the level of training. The research participant will have the opportunity to collaborate with EPA Regions, researchers, states, and local stakeholders to improve EPA's abilities in generating and translating decision-relevant, spatial social and ecological data to end-users.

The research participant will also have the opportunity to attend research team meetings and be involved in all aspects of the research. This may include active engagement with stakeholders regarding applications of the research. There will be opportunities to develop and conduct projects within the overall research program, and to publish and present research.

Mentor(s): The mentor for this opportunity is Anne Neale (neale.anne@epa.gov). If you have questions about the nature of the research please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: October 2020.  All start dates are flexible and vary depending on numerous factors. Click here for detailed information about start dates.

Appointment Length: The appointment will initially be for one year and may be renewed up to three additional years upon EPA recommendation and subject to availability of funding.

Level of Participation: The appointment is full-time.

Participant Stipend: The participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. Click here for detailed information about full-time stipends.

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

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 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.

Questions: Please see the FAQ section of our website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process please email EPArpp@orau.org and include the reference code for this opportunity.


The qualified candidate should have received a master's degree in one of the relevant fields. Degree must have been received within five years of the anticipated appointment start date.

Preferred skills:
  • Quantitative data management and analysis, including: Geographic Information System (GIS) data management, analysis and mapping; statistical analysis and scripting using R, Python, Javascript. In particular, this research will include integrating social data with natural spatial data.
  • Knowledge and experience in working with spatial ecological and social science data.
  • Attention to detail and record keeping.
  • Prior experience or desire to work with stakeholder groups.
Eligibility Requirements
  • Degree: Master's Degree received within the last 60 months or anticipated to be received by 10/30/2020 11:59:00 PM.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences (4 )
    • Earth and Geosciences (4 )
    • Engineering (1 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (6 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (4 )
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (3 )
  • Veteran Status: Veterans Preference, degree received within the last 120 month(s).