Internship 101

Our department’s field internship requirement provides students majoring in Environmental Public Health the opportunity to apply the knowledge and skills they have learned in the classroom in an actual work setting.

Our alumni consistently report that the experience, skills, and connections they gained through their 400-hour internship were essential in landing their first jobs. Internships usually take place during the summer, with the vast majority of our students finding paid experiences.

Contact Dan Poux for a career services appointment to discuss your internship.  



Internship timeline

  • After you join the major
    Enroll in ENV H 480

    Seminar exposes undergraduate students to a range of environmental and occupational health career paths.

    ENV H 480 is taught in person in the fall, when the majority of BS students enroll. The seminar is also offered in winter and spring quarters for students who enter the major later.

    Course topics: 

    • Researching career pathways
    • Searching for internships
    • Building your network (DEOHS alumni panel)
    • Crafting a compelling cover letter
    • Evaluating internship opportunities (current undergraduate student panel)
    • Acing an interview

    Enroll now
  • Four months before your search
    Set internship goals

    Reflect on what you’d like to accomplish in your internship. This handout from the UW Career Center may help you articulate your goals. 

  • Two months before you begin your search
    Check internship postings

    Start monitoring current internship opportunities on Portal. Postings for summer internships peak in February and March. Many professional organizations have their own job boards. 

  • One month before you begin your search
    Learn about expectations for interns

    Review the Internship Manual to learn more about the expectations for interns and employers and the Guidelines for Intern Conduct, which details expectations for students before, during and after their internship.

  • Starting your internship search
    Tailor your resume

    Emphasize the required and desired qualifications listed in the internship description. Resume Worded is a free tool from the UW Career Center that will compare your resume to the position description and point out keywords that you should incorporate.

  • Once your resume is ready
    Customize your cover letters

    Craft a customized, compelling cover letter for each internship that reflects an understanding of the organizational culture and what makes each opportunity different than others. This handout from the UW Career Center will help you get started.

  • During the hiring process
    Practice interviewing

    Practice your interviewing technique. Schedule a Career Services appointment for a mock interview, or ask a friend/family member to interview you using these seven common interview questions and provide feedback via this Mock Interview Rubric.

  • When offered an internship
    Evaluate your offer

    This Evaluating Internships handout can help students when deciding to pursue an internship or accept an offer. Confirm a plan for where you will live and how you will get to your internship. Email Tania Busch Isaksen with your proposed internship work plan before you begin work.

  • Three weeks before your internship
    Make a plan

    Work with your supervisor on the Internship Work Plan. This plan will help clarify your roles and responsibilities, as well as your professional development goals for the experience. Email Tania Busch Isaksen with your proposed internship work plan before you begin work.

  • When the internship ends
    Wrapping things up

    Review the Guidelines for Intern Conduct and the next steps to take at the end of your internship. This handout provides questions to aid in reflection, analysis and integration

  • During or after your internship
    Enroll in ENV H 482.

    If your internship occurs during the summer, you can register for either summer or fall quarter. If you have a part-time internship during the academic year, you should register for the quarter you expect your internship to finish. Regardless of when you register for ENV H 482, you must email Tania Busch Isaksen with your proposed internship work plan before you begin work.



Frequently asked questions

Our Internship Opportunities page on Portal has the latest announcements of undergraduate and graduate internships in Washington and around the country. 

Most students get internships in one of three ways: 

  • Applying to posted internships on the Student Portal page
  • Applying to national internships found through independent research, such as on,, Google or company-specific HR sites. 
  • Developing new internship opportunities through networking. For example, students commonly get internships by reaching out directly to organizations they’re interested in or arranging informational interviews. 

All students should expect to search for and apply to internships starting in July through the end of the school year. We recommend applying to at least 10 internships. 

Internship requirements are available in the Internship Page on the Student Portal. To verify if an internship meets major requirements email Tania.

You can make an appointment with Dan at your convenience. In the meantime, here are some tips: 

  • Write targeted cover letters and adapt your resume for each internship application. 
  • Apply to at least 10 internships. 
  • Apply early. Start in late summer for the following year, and monitor internship postings regularly. 
  • Apply within the first three days a new internship is posted. 

Congratulations! Take a moment to celebrate your hard work. Here are some steps to get started: 

  • If you have not done so already, email the internship description to Tania to ensure the internship will meet your degree requirements. 
  • If you need time to make a decision, you can ask for a day or two at most to discuss this opportunity with your faculty advisor, Dan or your family. 
  • Once you’ve accepted an offer, please notify Dan via email as soon as possible.

It’s always a good idea to evaluate each offer independently from other internship opportunities. What caused you to initially apply? What skills or experiences would you gain from this internship? Once you’ve accepted an internship, it’s standard to withdraw other applications and turn down interview requests. Do not accept an internship you do not plan to complete. 

To accept an internship only to withdraw later for a different offer would jeopardize your professional reputation, as well as damage the department’s ability to offer internships to future students.

It is not typical to negotiate compensation for an internship. At some internships, you might be able to negotiate start and end dates or hours. However, you should ask if they’re negotiable and not assume that they are.



Career development workshops 

Our department sponsors career development workshops and employer information sessions to prepare students for careers in the field. Students, faculty and public health leaders from across the Pacific Northwest meet to discuss employment opportunities available for environmental and occupational health graduates. Attendees include representatives from industry, consulting, governmental agencies and advocacy groups.  



Internship job board

Check out internship opportunities on Portal for the latest internship postings in Washington and around the country.

Enroll in ENV H 480

This course serves as an introduction and orientation to our internship program.

Schedule a career services appointment

For current DEOHS undergraduate and graduate students. We can explore internships and jobs, review your resume/CV or talk about how to build skills employers are looking for!

Join us on LinkedIn

Tap into the DEOHS student & alumni group on LinkedIn to learn more about employers of interest.