Postgraduate Research Opportunity in Chemical and Environmental Engineering

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 Please include the reference code for this opportunity in your email.

Application Deadline
5/19/2020 3:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

*Applications will be reviewed on a rolling-basis.

Two research opportunities are currently available at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Office of Water (OW). This appointment will be served with the Office of Ground Water and Drinking Water (OGWDW) in the Water Security Division (WSD) located in Washington, DC.

The objective of this project is to advance the nation's analytical ability to response to drinking water and waste water contamination incidents.  A goal is to build the Agency's capacity to guide and coordinate activities to ensure that water utilities such as drinking water and waste water systems are protecting and safeguarding public health from terrorists and other intentional acts as well as natural and other disasters. This project will conduct research to provide technical assistance to water utilities for conducting vulnerability assessments, developing/revising emergency response plans, and responding to security alerts and attacks; and this project will conduct research to build effective water security practices into the ongoing operations of water utilities.

Under the guidance of a mentor, the participant will develop skills to advance incident response efforts for the nation’s water sector by learning how to create new tools and technical guidance documents. The participant will be able to present research results at technical conferences and collaborate with federal agencies and the general public aimed towards protecting the water and wastewater infrastructure of the United States. In addition, the participant will be exposed to research efforts aimed towards water infrastructure protection, including physical damage, contamination from biological, chemical and radiological agents and system failures.  Specifically the participant will:

  • Learn how to research and compose biological, chemical and radiochemical contaminant profiles
  • Learn about methodologies used to strengthen the infrastructure of water systems
  • Learn how science policy is developed and implemented on the federal level

The mentor for this opportunity is Latisha Mapp (

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: Spring/Summer 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. The annual stipend will be as follows depending on education level: $48,670 (Bachelor's), $59,534 (Master's) and $72,030 (Doctoral). Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. The appointment is full-time at EPA in the 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. OPM can complete a background investigation only for individuals, including non-US citizens, who have resided in the US for the past three years.


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 June 1, 2020. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date. 

Candidates that possess either chemical or environmental engineering skills sets are strongly desired.

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 6/1/2020 11:59:00 PM.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Chemistry and Materials Sciences (12 )
    • Earth and Geosciences (21 )
    • Engineering (3 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (14 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (45 )
  • Veteran Status: Veterans Preference, degree received within the last 120 month(s).