USDA Forest Service Southern Research Station

by justineh

PICS Organization Name
USDA Forest Service Southern Research Station


Asheville, North Carolina

Weekly Stipend

Public Transportation

Housing Provided

Former Interns
Kiley Coates '20, Mim Ra Aslaoui '18

Organization Description
Southern Research Station conducts natural resource related research programs and shares research results with a variety of audiences, partners, congressional delegates, youth and the general public. The headquarters office in Asheville houses approximately 50 personnel, with 250 others located at research labs and/or on university campuses around the southeastern U.S.

Our mission is to engage in high-quality research leading to the scientific and technological advances needed to sustain and enhance forest ecosystems and the full range of benefits they provide.  Researchers are melding long-term studies with 21st Century technology to address emerging challenges including how forces such as climate and land use change, populations growth, invasive plants and pathogens, and fire affect timber, wildlife, clean air and water, recreation, and other ecosystems services.  

Internship Description 

The primary focus of work for the interns is to assist in communicating research results to a broad array of audiences. Interns will work alongside our science writers and public affairs specialists to prepare communications products. They will meet with scientists and partners in the field, may help with field studies, and then transfer the research information into a variety of formats for distribution. This includes social media such as Twitter and Story Maps, as well as traditional media like briefing papers. Interns will be given individual as well as group assignments. Overnight travel to research locations in the southeastern U.S. will be paid for by Southern Research Station

Internship Qualifications

  • Strong writing and social media skills
  • Comfortable getting out into natural settings and assisting with a variety of field work/projects

Expected Start Time
8:00 am

Expected End Time
5:00 pm

Required Dates
June through August

Internship Length
10 Weeks

Meets Certificate Requirement
Yes, History and Practice of Diplomacy 

Additional Info

Fulfills requirement for the Certificate in History and Practice of Diplomacy (

Asheville is a college town with numerous apartments and rooms available for rent in the summer. No prep work outside of the regular work schedule.

Evaluation Excerpt

My PICS internship this summer allowed me an opportunity to explore my interest in environmental science despite not having had much training or experience in the field. As a result, I now feel more empowered to pursue avenues like environmental law and activism. 
—Mim Ra Aslaoui '18

Being an intern here really opened my eyes to environmental issues and the Communications team showed the importance of how scientific information is disseminated to communities.
—Kiley Coates '20

To see whether this internship is still accepting applications for 2018, please check the Second Round page.


To read evaluations written by former interns, please contact the
Student Program