Internships and Research Opportunities

Research and internship experiences are valuable résumé builders for all students, whether they are interested in entering the workforce or if they want to pursue graduate school.  There are several different opportunities on and off campus worth looking into including research opportunities with faculty, internships at national parks, or research experiences at other universities.

Research Opportunities On-Campus

We encourage undergraduates to get involved in faculty research projects while at UIC.  Typically, the sooner the better.  Students can look through faculty profiles to see if any research topics peak their interests and should contact faculty via email or stop by their office to ask about research opportunities.  Research experience often gives students an idea of what its like to be a scientist and work in a lab group.

Students can earn credit for research on campus by taking EAES 396.  Students can also work with faculty by applying for funds through the the Chancellor’s Undergraduate Research Award and the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Undergraduate Research Initiative.

Internships and Research Experiences Off-Campus

Students are encouraged to apply for summer internships and research experiences. The hands-on experience working with a scientists can help students define their professional objectives more clearly. They can help in comparing assumptions and expectations of professional life to reality. They also provide students with experience and networking opportunities, both of which are beneficial when searching for a job or a graduate school.

Credit for internships in governmental or private-sector training program can be awarded by registering for EAES 492, Internship in the Earth and Environmental Sciences. You must register for this class during the semester you are taking the internship, credit will not be given retroactively. At the beginning of the internship, we require a letter from your supervisor detailing your position and their expectations. The supervisor should also provide a letter at the conclusion summarizing your accomplishments; you will also have to submit a written report.

Often, environmental companies require a 40 hour Hazardous Waste safety course which meets the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards. Sometimes, large companies or agencies will offer you such a course prior to the start of an internship.