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Student and Career Opportunities

Explore the many different internship, career and growth opportunities offered by the USGS.

Student Opportunities at USGS

NAGT-USGS Cooperative Field Training Program

Approximately 50 students are hired each year as summer interns through the National Association of Geoscience Teachers (NAGT)-USGS Cooperative Summer Field Training Program. (NOTE: In order to apply, students must be nominated by field camp directors in the fall after they complete field camp. If you are interested, let your field camp directory know.)

USGS-NSF Internships for PhD Students

The National Science Foundation has created two programs for NSF-supported PhD students to complete internships at the USGS and other federal agencies. The first, Graduate Research Internship Program (GRIP), is open only to NSF Graduate Research Fellows (GRF). The second, Graduate Student Preparedness (GSP), is open to any PhD student who is supported by an NSF grant. The goal of both the GRIP and GSP programs is to give young researchers the opportunity to work at a federal science center.

Interested graduate students should start by identifying a research project or a USGS scientist with whom they want to work. They will work in collaboration to write a supplemental funding request to NSF.

USGS Internships and other Student/Recent Graduate Job Opportunities

The USGS offers a wide variety of employment opportunities for U.S. citizens who are recent graduates or current students (including those accepted for enrollment in a qualifying educational program) with concentrations in geology, hydrology, ecology, biology, cartography, chemistry, computer science, and many other disciplines and business fields supporting science. USGS student positions are publicly advertised year round on USAJOBS.

Interested applicants should go to USAJOBS, create a profile and resume, and upload supporting documents such as unofficial transcripts. Job searches can be done by selecting either "Find Internships" or "Find Recent Graduate Jobs" and refining the search results under Department and Agency by selecting Department of the Interior: Geological Survey. In addition, students should reach out to scientists and career counselors at their school to ask about USGS opportunities. Many USGS offices are closely associated with universities and have ongoing student projects.

Mendenhall Post-Doctoral Research Opportunity

The USGS Mendenhall Fellows program regularly hires scientists within five years of receiving their PhD for fellowships of up to two years in USGS research labs across the country. Opportunities are posted periodically. There are approximately 50 Mendenhall Fellows at the USGS.

Videos of Student Interns at the USGS

Find out what student interns are doing at the USGS, and see how some of them have used their internship to launch a full-time career in science.

USGS Career Cards

What are some of the career tracks available at the USGS? Explore a series of 4" x 6" cards that describe the job duties and qualifications for some our scientific and technical positions.

Government-wide Opportunities (including USGS)

Search through 15 different government science agencies for information about ongoing programs, including Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) student opportunities.

Find volunteer positions for students and citizens of all ages through this interagency Federal Web portal.

Virtual Student Foreign Service

This virtual internship (eInternship) program allows college-level students to contribute about 10 hours per week to a project hosted by a participating government agency. Managed by the Department of State, the VSFS program enables eInterns to work remotely on projects all over the world. In 2016 the USGS offered an eInternship opportunity in earth science education.

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