Intern Opportunities

TDEC’s Internship program is an excellent opportunity for college students to develop professionally, acquire real-world experiences, establish valuable references, enhance their resume, and earn college credit. TDEC offers a variety of internship opportunities across the state of Tennessee in our three bureaus. Some of the areas include:

Internship Opportunities Available

  • Bureau of Environment Divisions: Air Pollution Control, Geology, Radiological Health, Remediation, Office of Energy Programs, Office of Sustainable Practices, Solid Waste Management, Underground Storage Tank, and Water Resources.
  • Bureau of Administration Divisions: Office of External Affairs, Finance/Fiscal Services, Office of General Counsel, Office of Human Resources, Office of Policy and Planning, and Office of Talent Management.
  • Bureau of Conservation Divisions: Archaeology, Natural Areas Program, and Recreation Educational Services.
  • Tennessee State Parks: SIR program.

Location and Compensation:

Interns can participate in opportunities at TDEC’s Central Office in downtown Nashville or in one of the nine Environmental Field Offices located in Chattanooga, Columbia, Cookeville, Jackson, Johnson City, Knoxville, Memphis, Oak Ridge or Nashville. In general interns are not compensated. However, there may be opportunities in some divisions to receive some compensation. This is determined by the specific division.

Requirements and How to Apply for TDEC Internships:

  • Candidates must be actively enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate school program and have a B average or above.
  • Candidates must receive college credit for the internship.

  • All candidates should submit a resume, cover letter, and guidelines established by the college/university for the internship program via email to Deanna.Jones@tn.gov.
  • TDEC may request a transcript upon acceptance to the internship program.
  • Please include the following information in your cover letter:
    • Field of Study
    • City, county or location desired
    • Desired dates, Summer, Spring, or Fall
    • Contact information for college/university administrator for your school’s internship program. Include full name, title, phone number, and email address.
    • Guidelines established by the college/university for the internship program.Applications will be reviewed and referred to appropriate. TDEC division/office for consideration by the supervising manager.

Applicants will be notified by email regarding interviews for intern positions. It is recommended you provide two email addresses and a telephone number for contact information. Contact with your intern administrator will be part of the resume review process and interview.

Applicants can also mail information to:

Deanna Jones, Deputy Director
Office of Talent Management
The Department of Environment and Conservation
William R. Snodgrass TN Tower
312 Rosa L. Parks Ave., 22nd Floor
Nashville, TN 37243

If selected for an interview interns will be required to complete a State Application (position applied for should be “intern”), a Volunteer Registration Form, a Release of Liability Form, and a Letter of Agreement, which details the start and end date of the internship, as well as the expectations and responsibilities of the intern, and other required state of Tennessee paperwork. Provide proof of identity, i.e. valid drivers’ license, and eligibility to work in the US.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the salary for interns?
A. The majority of internships at TDEC are unpaid. If the student is a part of the Seasonal Interpretive Recreator Program (SIR), salary is approximately $9.00/hr.

Q. What is the length of an internship?
A. We coordinate the requirements of each school’s internship program to provide the necessary hours required for college credit.

Q. Is there an age limit for interns?
A. There is not an age requirement. However, interns must be enrolled in a full-time undergraduate or graduate program that gives college credit for internship. Junior and Senior level students will be given preference.

Q. Are interns allowed to drive state vehicles?
A. If the internship is part of the State Parks SIR program, and is a paid internship, they are considered a state employee and are eligible to drive a state car when required. The intern must have a valid driver’s license.

Q. Are interns eligible for state benefits?
A. No, interns are considered part-time employees and are not eligible for benefits.

For additional questions please email: Deanna.Jones@tn.gov or call 865-594-5561.