USDA-ARS Greenhouse Trainee Internship

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)
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

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

Application Deadline
9/1/2023 3:00:00 PM Eastern Time Zone

*Applications may be reviewed on a rolling-basis.

ARS Office/Lab and LocationA research opportunity is currently available within the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Agricultural Research Service (ARS), with the Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research Unit located in Frederick, Maryland.

The Agricultural Research Service (ARS) is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief scientific in-house research agency with a mission to find solutions to agricultural problems that affect Americans every day from field to table. ARS will deliver cutting-edge, scientific tools and innovative solutions for American farmers, producers, industry, and communities to support the nourishment and well-being of all people; sustain our nation’s agroecosystems and natural resources; and ensure the economic competitiveness and excellence of our agriculture. The vision of the agency is to provide global leadership in agricultural discoveries through scientific excellence.

The Foreign Disease-Weed Science Research Unit is a unique governmental research facility with a mission to combat invasive organisms that endanger U.S. agriculture. These organisms can be foreign pathogens (bacteria, viruses, fungi, oomycetes) that cause disease on economically important crops or invasive weeds that endanger crops or rangeland. Our 43,000 square foot research facility provides a wide range of labs, greenhouses, and growth chambers, including a 10,000 square foot BSL-3 containment facility.

Research Project: Trainee will learn about and assist with all aspects of greenhouse management and plant pathology in both our propagation and containment greenhouse facilities. 

Learning ObjectivesSpecific learning opportunities may include: monitoring greenhouse operating conditions, propagation and cultivation of plants, scouting and monitoring for disease and insect pests, implementing ongoing beneficial insect program, maintaining and installing irrigation systems, installing/maintaining/programming supplemental lighting systems, operating autoclave/forklift/ bobcat/snowplow, and additional opportunities as they arise.

Mentor(s)The mentor for this opportunity is Elizabeth Rogers ( If you have questions about the nature of the research, please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: June 2023.  Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year, but may be extended upon recommendation of ARS and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time.

Participant StipendThe participant(s) will receive an annual stipend commensurate with educational level and experience.

Citizenship RequirementsThis opportunity is available to U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR).

ORISE InformationThis 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 ARS. Participants do not become employees of USDA, ARS, 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 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 an associate's or bachelor's degree in one of the relevant fields or be currently pursuing one of the degrees with completion before start of appointment. Degree must have been received within the past ten years.

Preferred skills:

  • Ideal educational background would include a degree (associate's or bachelor's) in plant science, plant pathology, or greenhouse management.
  • Experience working in greenhouse settings and with pesticide application are a plus. 
Eligibility Requirements
  • Citizenship: LPR or U.S. Citizen
  • Degree: Associate's Degree or Bachelor's Degree received within the last 120 months or currently pursuing.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (3 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (48 )
  • Age: Must be 18 years of age