Summer Internship Program 2016

Feb 24, 2016

The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC), funded through an award to the University of Maryland from the National Science Foundation, is accepting applications for its 2016 Undergraduate Summer Internship Program.

Interns in this program will spend the majority of their time working with mentors at their offices or labs on research projects related to socio-environmental issues. Additionally, interns will participate in weekly Internship Program events, including field trips and seminars; these events will include trips to SESYNC's facilities in Annapolis, Maryland, where interns will be introduced to the socio-environmental synthesis research approach and will have the opportunity to meet researchers at the Center.

To learn more about the SESYNC Internship Program and experiences of a few former interns, please visit:

Program Goals

This program aims to provide interns with opportunities to develop professional skills, meet people working on environmental problems, and deepen their understanding of socio-environmental issues. More specifically, interns will:

  • Obtain an authentic research or work experience and contribute to their mentor's research program or project.
  • Enhance their understanding of the complex nature of socially relevant environmental problems.
  • Learn about research approaches, particularly the synthesis approach, used to address socio-environmental problems.
  • Enhance their understanding of how scientific evidence may be used to inform decision making and policy with regard to environmental problems.

Program Details

Internship positions are full-time (40 hours/week) from June 6–August 12, 2016. Interns will be paid $11/hour.

The program will begin with a mandatory orientation on Monday, June 6, 2016. Most internships will be based at the University of Maryland in College Park, but a few may be based elsewhere in the DC/Baltimore/Annapolis region.

Transportation between College Park and SESYNC in Annapolis for weekly Internship Program events and other field trip destinations will be arranged by SESYNC.


All interns must be registered as full-time undergraduate students at University of Maryland, College Park or Coppin State University. Seniors who graduate in spring of 2016 are not eligible for this internship.

Selection & Mentor Matching Process/Criteria

Interns will be selected by SESYNC staff based upon the strength of their academic record, achievements, and demonstrated interest in environmental sustainability and socio-environmental issues. Finalists for the internship will be contacted in mid-March, and final placements will be made as quickly as possible (the process takes several weeks). To facilitate matching of interns and mentors with compatible interests, finalists will be asked for feedback on possible mentor placements, and mentors will review application materials of suitable interns as selected by the SESYNC team. SESYNC will make an effort to satisfy intern and mentor preferences, but we cannot guarantee placement with preferred mentors. Placement of finalists is dependent upon finding a good match with a mentor and project, and not all finalists will be guaranteed an internship position.

To Apply

Please complete the webform here, which includes uploading a single PDF file (labeled "Last Name, First Name") containing your resume, a copy of your transcript, and a statement of interest (400 words max). In the statement of interest, please describe why you would like to participate in this internship and comment on how the program fits with your interests and academic/career goals. Please also identify what kind of experiences you seek or skills you'd like to develop through this internship. (For example, "I am interested in gaining experience doing field work" or "I want to work on a project that will allow me to exercise my GIS skills.") This information will be used in the mentor matching process.

Please also arrange for one letter of recommendation from a professional or academic reference. Letters of recommendation should be emailed directly by the recommender to with the intern’s last name and “SESYNC INTERNSHIP” in the subject line.

Applications and letters of recommendation must be received by Wednesday, February 24, 2016, at 5 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST).


The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, funded through an award to the University of Maryland from the National Science Foundation, is a research center dedicated to accelerating data-driven scientific discovery at the interface of human and ecological systems. Visit us online at and follow us on Twitter @SESYNC.

The University of Maryland is an Equal Opportunity Employer. Minorities and women are encouraged to apply.

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