Internships and Career Preparation

The SWES Undergraduate Internship program is designed to broaden skills by providing real world applications to academic studies.  Intern placements vary from federal government agencies (National Park Service: National Forest Service: Bureau of Land Management) and State and local government (Arizona Game & Fish; Pima County Wastewater; Tucson Water) to public not-for-profits, to private industry to campus organizations.  Positions must involve significant work with an environmental or sustainability focus.  The internship is a significant component of the environmental science degree program.

Upper division standing at the time of the internship is recommended.  Additional requirements may be set by the sponsoring organization.  Completion of ENVS 195A Careers in Environmental Science is recommended, but not required.  ENVS 195A offers an excellent preparation by providing insights for finding and preparing for internships and independent studies.

Pre-Internship:  Getting Started:

When you are ready to start looking for an internship, begin by identifying agencies or organizations at which you would like to work.  Opportunities for internships are frequently advertised over listservs and of website.  Or you can secure an internship on your own by making contact with an organization representative, meeting to discuss your interests and possible contribution as an intern.  You should make sure to provide copies of your updated resume.  Students who enroll in ENVS 195A freshman year have an advantage by having personal documents in place that can help them secure their ideal internship position.  After securing your internship, you will need to submit an application for registering for your internship and an Assumption of Risk form.   Once all the paperwork is complete, you will be enrolled through the SWES Advising Office.

Post-Internship:  Department Presentation

You will be giving your presentation along with other interns from the department.  The presentations will be scheduled during fall semester and will be open to all students in the Environmental Science and the Sustainable Plant Systems majors.  You are encouraged to invite your Internship Supervisor.  Your presentation will be a summary of your internship experience and should include tangible examples of contributions you made to the organization including reports, maps/graphs, organizational materials, etc.  Presentations will be made using PowerPoint for which you will need to submit your PowerPoint document one week in advance.  Please allow 15 minutes for your presentation and additional five minutes for questions and discussion.

Students who wish to earn University credit for their Internship must submit an Application for Internship and an Assumption of Risk form.   Enrollment cannot be retroactive for an Internship initiated in a prior semester.  Both paid and unpaid internships are acceptable. 

ENVS 393/493 Internship Syllabus.


Student Internship Profiles 


Students are also required to submit a witten internship profile for website publication. The 2016 Internship profiles written by students can be found at