USDA Natural Resources and Environment

The USDA Natural Resources and Environment mission area is a subcabinet level agency reporting to the Secretary of Agriculture. We provide policy guidance and support to the USDA Forest Service with a permanent staff of 5 people. The Forest Service is an organization of close to 30,000 people that stewards 193 million acres of National Forests and Grasslands with a multiple use mission to care for the land and serve people. Forest Service work ranges from natural resource management to wildfire response to urban wood reclamation to managing the nation's largest trail network to assisting Tribes and private forestland owners with land management to habitat and watershed restoration to law enforcement and a wide range of forest research on climate smart forest management and new uses of wood products to help sequester carbon. We are interested in a Princeton intern to help us learn what students value about natural resource policy and land management work, and value their perspectives in addressing the issues that will affect the environment and climate around them for years to come. 


Washington, DC

Internship Description

Do you care about the environment and climate change? Are you interested in how natural resources are managed, and how to increase diversity, equity and access? Does policy making spark joy for you? The USDA Natural Resources and Environment mission area wants YOU!! 
The USDA Natural Resources and Environment mission area provides guidance to the U.S. Forest  Service. We're looking for a team member to help us bring the science of land management to bear on reducing wildfire risks for human and natural communities, help shape our work to restore forest and watershed health, increase carbon sequestration on public lands, and contribute to broadening diversity and equity in the conservation workforce and in access to public lands. The Forest Service manages 193 million acres of National Forests and Grasslands across America as part of carrying out its mission to care for the land and serve people. Or, as Gifford Pinchot put it in 1905: to provide the greatest good for the greatest number over the long run. The work will be varied as part of a fast paced office with a small team that both responds to issues that arise and proposes collaborative ways to address them going forward. In a small office like this one, the intern will have exposure to specialists and policy makers and gain a perspective of the range of organizations, interests, and issues involved with public land management. Specific work is likely to focus on addressing climate change, increasing forest resilience, and broadening public lands access to all people. 

# of weeks Required Dates Start Time End Time Public Transit Housing  Format
10 Flexible 8:30am 5:30pm Yes No In person

Housing Information

Washington, DC offers a range of housing options common to major metropolitan areas. 

Internship Qualifications

Intern candidates will have:

  • Natural resources policy interest 
  • Interest and understanding of data management and use to display information 
  • Communications skills, orally and in writing 

Additional qualifications:

  • Capacity and interest in working in teams 
  • Sense of humor 

Writing Sample Required

  • Please describe why this internship is of interest to you. What attracts you to it, and what do you hope to learn or experience?

Special Requirements

  • Vaccinations (including Covid-19)
  • Interns may want to read and review materials outside of regular working hours, but it will not be required.