Experiential learning through real-world solutions

The Office of Sustainability Student Internship Program provides opportunities for experiential learning and professional development while making a positive and tangible impact within the University of Georgia and Athens communities. The Office of Sustainability partners with campus and community organizations to identify real-world challenges and develop sustainable solutions. Leadership training is enhanced through a collaboration with J.W. Fanning Institute for Leadership Development.

A group of students relax in canoes and kayaks on a lake.

Are you a student who would like to apply for a sustainability internship position?

The Office of Sustainability is committed to cultivating an inclusive, diverse and respectful workplace. All current students are welcome and encouraged to apply. Open positions are listed below. Applications for Fall 2021 positions will close on April 12, 2021.

Internship Application

Open Internship positions for fall semester 2021

Fundraising Coordinator (Chess and Community Collaboration)

The Fundraising Coordinator (FC) will oversee Chess and Community’s (CC) activities to stimulate and support the development, expansion, and maintenance of the program’s financial resources. FC will coordinate with the public relations coordinator to promote awareness of Chess and Community programs and identify strategies to maintain favorable partnerships and relationships with local community residents, providers, and collaborators.  This position is seeking someone with the following skills: Great interpersonal skills, experience in fundraising and social media marketing, ability to work independently and with a team, great communicator (i.e., public speaking skills) who can deliver content to diverse audiences.  Responsibilities will include fundraising through organizing and marketing community events and working collaboratively with a multidisciplinary team. 

UGArden Compost

This intern will report to UGArden and manage the farm composting system. They will work with a Master Gardener to manage the piles, grind and turn them with a tractor, and record the temperature for our compost records. Experience operating equipment not required. However this intern will be expected to operate the tractor and should be prepared and willing to do so. Intern may be asked to assist with other UGArden.

Data Collection & Communication Intern 

The Data Collection & Communication Intern will work directly with community partner Broderick Flanigan to source data that informs socially engaged artworks. The project involves a deep dive into the work of W E B Dubois and documenting data and statistics on Black families social markers. Intern will collect, analyze, and summarize data from a variety of sources such as public surveys and state and national databases. Work will primarily be completed remotely. Candidates should exhibit strong organization, data collection and analysis, written and interpersonal communication, and project management skills.

Strategic Communications Intern

The Strategic Communications Intern will elevate sustainability initiatives at UGA through newsletters, social media, and other creative engagement. Intern may write short and long form stories, create videos, and implement other strategies to engage the campus and local community. Candidates should be organized, collaborative, and exhibit excellent written and verbal communication skills, a passion for sustainability, and an interest in strategic engagement to inform and inspire action.

Campus Compost Intern

Intern will co-lead the tricycle-powered UGA Campus Compost Program including physical collection of compost bins from 80+ campus locations, communication with current and prospective program participants, and general promotion of composting at UGA. Candidates must have a passion for composting and engaging with others, be a safe and confident bicyclist, have a valid driver’s license, enjoy working behind the scenes and getting your hands dirty (and smelly), be willing to work outdoors in less than ideal weather conditions, and able to lift up to 50 lbs.

Bee Campus Intern

Intern will provide support for UGA’s Bee Campus USA Certification and Campus Pollinator Committee, including collaborating with committee members and programs, assessing and mapping habitat, assisting with planting plans, and sourcing in support of the UGA Grounds Department, maintaining pollinator spaces and organizing volunteer events and class participation to develop and manage pollinator habitat, and creating educational material to engage campus and community. Students from Horticulture or Landscape Architecture are preferred. Candidates should have a rudimentary knowledge of pollinator species and habitat and possess basic computer skills.

Sustainability Certificate Intern

The intern will support the Sustainability Certificate by coordinating events, communicating with students and faculty, representing the certificate (presentations and tabling), updating the certificate website, developing certificate materials, and working with our alumni network and ambassadors.

Artist in Residence Intern-Pollinator Project

The Office of Sustainability Artist in Residence (AiR)  is a non-traditional position designed to infuse creativity into on-going OoS programs and activities, promote collaboration between artists and other disciplines, engage the campus community in new ways, and give artists an opportunity to explore ideas and develop work related to sustainability.  The AiR will spend up to 10 hours each week at the Office of Sustainability in the Chicopee Building, where they will embed in the Campus Pollinator Project and develop at least one creative project that engages the campus and/or community (such as workshops, exhibitions, performance, intervention, etc.). The AiR receives support and resources from the OoS, with guidance from the Social Ecology Lab and Ideas for Creative Exploration. All arts disciplines are encouraged to apply. This internship will last both Fall and Spring semesters.

Campus Kitchen Communications Intern

The Campus Kitchen Communications Intern is responsible for communicating important food recovery and distribution events, projects and operations both internally to the CK team and to the wider Athens community. This intern will maintain our email platform, social media pages, and physical forms like flyers, as well as attend student involvement events. The CK Communications Intern will serve as an integral part of Campus Kitchen’s leadership team, attending weekly leadership meetings, working on group projects, and jumping in with day-to-day operations as necessary.

Academic and Alumni Engagement Intern

Intern will engage with faculty and intern and certificate alumni through communications, events, and the development of resources.  This includes supporting sustainability across the curriculum by putting together a monthly faculty newsletter, assisting with faculty events and workshops, and developing sustainability curricular material and resources. Intern will also engage with Office of Sustainability Intern and Certificate alumni through a bi annual newsletter, networking and mentoring events, and database updates.  

Circular Materials Management / Zero Waste Intern 

Intern will lead Zero Waste and reuse initiatives including the Swap Shop at UGA, reconditioned water bottle program, and deskside waste reduction program. Additional tasks may include assess campus waste reduction infrastructure, install recycling signage, develop zero waste campaigns, conduct waste audits of campus buildings, and/or other waste reduction efforts. Intern will work closely with multiple people and departments to carry out projects. Candidates must have a valid driver’s license, a passion for reducing waste and engaging with others, an ability to plan and coordinate complicated logistical tasks, and be willing to work hard behind the scenes.

Greek Life Intern

Are you a member of a Greek organization on campus? Do you want to see the Greek community expand its leadership role in sustainability, equity, and inclusion? The Greek Life intern coordinates the Greek Goes Green program and serves as a liaison between individual chapters, Greek Life, Athens Clarke County Recycling Division, and the UGA Office of Sustainability. This position includes educating and empowering fraternity/sorority sustainability coordinators, advancing equitable sustainability initiatives among diverse Greek chapters, and ensuring compliance with UGA and ACC waste reduction strategies. Experience in event planning and social media management is beneficial to this role but is not a requirement. Candidates should be self-motivated with a passion for sustainability, strong communication and organizational skills, and an ability to effectively collaborate with and inspire others.

Ecorep Intern

The Intern will assist the Housing Sustainability Coordinator with special projects and education for sustainability within on-campus housing. Specifically the intern selected will co-advise the EcoReps, a group of students who hold community council elected positions dedicated to promoting environmental sustainability in the residence halls. Responsibilities include facilitating EcoReps meetings bi-weekly, providing support for EcoReps programming creation, and preparing for the EcoReps conference in the spring. The intern may also choose from a number of outreach and research opportunities within University Housing, depending on his or her interests. Additionally, the intern will serve as a liaison between the Office of Sustainability and University Housing ensuring regular communication and collaboration on sustainability projects. Students with experience living or working on campus preferred.

Athens-Clarke County Natural Resource Management and Habitat Restoration Intern

This Intern position will assist with the development and implementation of natural resource land management plans and activities on public lands in Athens-Clarke County. Position will assist sustainability staff in efforts to evaluate, plan, manage, and restore natural areas for habitat and ecosystem service purposes. Key tasks include inventorying parks and natural areas for plants, cultural features, and hazards and inputting this information into GIS. Other activities include volunteer and stakeholder coordination, educational events, research and documentation. Candidates should have a background in botany and or plant id, be organized, and willing to work outdoors. GIS skills preferred.

Athens-Clarke County Sustainable Energy and Transportation Intern

This intern position will assist with all aspects of the Athens-Clarke County Sustainability Office’s energy and transportation initiative, including assisting with the development and implementation of the unit's energy management strategies and conservation program and policies associated with energy systems, energy use, and energy conservation within the community; researching energy and emerging technologies; assisting with the development of educational and training materials; assisting with the promotion of energy and transportation conservation initiatives; and researching and maintaining energy and transportation related databases; and writing educational and promotional materials for distribution.

Urban Agriculture Intern                                                        

Intern will advance the Athens Urban Food Collective rooftop garden on the Geography and Geology building through hands-on garden management, development of strategic community partners to address urban food insecurity, and other tasks as needed to promote AUFC and place-based urban agriculture at UGA.  This position will coordinate closely with UGArden staff and student organization and will report jointly to Athens Urban Food Collective faculty and the Office of Sustainability.

Food Operations Intern

This position will report to Campus Kitchen and Concrete Jungle to enhance education and awareness related to food waste, recovery, harvesting, storage, and distribution in and around the Athens area. CJ and CK work together very closely; the intern will be trained to operate a UGA vehicle in order assist with CK food recovery shifts and CJ harvest events, support in strengthening community and farmer partnerships, as work on other joint CK and CJ projects. This intern will also have the opportunity to train at UGArden to learn appropriate harvest, ripening, and storage techniques for various crops from JoHannah Biang and David Berle. Evening and weekend availability is crucial.

Concrete Jungle Programs Intern

The Concrete Jungle programs intern will support CJ’s core programming of fruit tree harvests and gleaning on farms. Tasks include leading, planning, and facilitating events, managing volunteers, coordinating food logistics, and generally supporting CJ operations, including but not limited to volunteer and farmer outreach and communications. Evening and weekend availability is crucial. Applicants should have strong communication and organizational skills. Horticultural knowledge, particularly in relation to fruit trees, is preferred.  

Current and past interns

A listing of current and past student interns can be found in the Interns Directory.

Internship Program Details

In addition to completing specific tasks related to individual internship positions, each student intern will complete the following required activities: 

Semester Kick-off

Team-building gathering and dinner during an afternoon/evening before semester classes begin.

Work Plan

An individual work plan will be completed by each intern by the end of the second week of the semester. This document will be revised periodically to track project goals and expectations. The Internship Coordinator and/or direct supervisor will assist development of individualized work plans.

Weekly Cohort Meetings

Interns are required to participate in weekly meetings with fellow interns, Office of Sustainability staff, and occasional guests. Meeting topics include project updates, team building and problem-solving, leadership and professional development, and public speaking opportunities. Interns should come to meetings prepared with updates, questions, and input.

Mid-Term Evaluation

Interns evaluate their experience to date in the program and supervisors evaluate intern performance. Intern meets with the Internship Coordinator and/or primary staff supervisor to discuss evaluations.

Final Presentations

At Semester in Review, which takes place on Reading Day, four to five interns will be selected to give oral presentations about their projects. All other interns will present a poster or other display of their project during the event.

Transition Document

Interns will document work completed, key contacts, and recommended next steps to help guide future interns or related projects.

Semester-End Interview

Interns will complete a survey and evaluation of the program and their internship experience.

The Internship Coordinator is responsible for managing the overall program to ensure successful outcomes for student interns and partnering organizations. The Internship Coordinator provides direct supprt to student interns throughout their particip[ation in the program. In addition, each intern will report directly to a supervisor who will guide the intern in completing specific projects and tasks. Office of Sustainability staff are available to support and advise students throughout their internship.

Interns typically spend 10 hours per week working on a specified project and assisting the Office of Sustainability and/or patnering organizations as needed.

Interns must notify their direct supervisor and the Internship Coordinator in advance of an absence. Attendance at the weekly All Intern Meeting is a required part of this internship and is included in the 10 working hours per week; please do not schedule doctor, dentist or other appointments during this time unless you are ill.

Paid interns are required to complete an I-9 Form through Facilities Management Division Human Resources to be onboarded into the UGA payroll system. Interns will be required to provide 1) a current resume with appropriate address, 2) a passport or picture ID and Social Security Card, and 3) a UGA ID number.

Interns are paid bi-weekly as hourly employees through the OneUSG Connect System. In order to be paid, student interns must directly input their hours into their timesheet. Interns are also responsible for ensuring that their bank information and emergency contacts are up to date. Employees, including student workers, can log on to check payroll and other information through OneUSG COnnect.

All interns are asked to assist with at least one Office of Sustainability event during the semester. Events and community service opportunities will be announced throughout the semester. Interns are encouraged to support their peers and to participate in service events while also maintaining personal health and academic success.

Some degree programs require an internship. Students are encouraged to initiate opportunities for relevant academic course credit through their college or school. To date, credit internships have been arranged through the Odum School of Ecology, College of Environment + Design, College of Public Health, Grady College of Journalism & Mass Communications, and others.