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Opportunities for Students and College Graduates

Whether you are on a career track, or in the process of determining which career you would like to pursue, the CDC has numerous internship, training, and volunteer opportunities for students of all academic disciplines and levels. Many of these opportunities provide invaluable experiences and potentially offer clear cut paths to exciting careers with CDC.

Pathways Program for Students and Recent Graduates
Public Health Training Opportunities
Federal Work Study Program
Emory Rollins Earn and Learn Program
Student (Volunteer) Worksite Experience Program
Thurgood Marshall College Foundation/Student Ambassador Program


Pathways Programs for Students and Recent Graduates

Great news! If you are a student or a recent college graduate, and are looking for rewarding work experience to supplement your education, then the Pathways Program is just for you. The Pathways program is made up of three main components: the Internship Program which offers internship and summer employment opportunities to students; the Recent Graduates Program where recent college graduates can obtain enriching developmental work experience in public health and related support occupations; and the Presidential Management Fellows Program that offers leadership development opportunities to students who in the process of completing their master’s, law, or doctoral-level degree within the academic year.  See the information below for more details.

Internship Program
The Internship Program is for high school or college student in search of an internship or other opportunity to gain work experience while in school. The program is designed to provide students who are enrolled in a wide variety of educational institutions, from high school to graduate level, with paid opportunities to work in agencies and explore Federal careers while still in school. Students who successfully complete the program may be eligible for conversion to a permanent job in the civil service. Browse available internship opportunities today!

Student Summer Employment – Pathways Interns

The Student Summer Employment provides training and work experience for individuals during summer months. The work ranges from office support to trades and labor occupations to positions in professional fields.

Students must meet the following eligibility requirements to participate in the Student Summer Employment:

  • Enrolled or accepted for enrollment as a diploma, certificate, or degree-seeking student. Verification showing enrollment status is required from the school.
  • Meet the minimum age required by federal, state, or local laws and standards governing the employment of minors.
  • Taking or scheduled to take a course load at least half-time in an accredited high school, technical or vocational school, 2-year or 4-year college or university, graduate or professional school.

Pay and Benefits
Students in the Pathways receive a competitive salary, but are not eligible for federal benefits.

How to Apply
Student summer employment opportunities are announced January through March of each year at Visit the website beginning in January for more information on applying for summer employment with CDC. Detailed instructions on how to apply for student summer employment opportunities are provided during the announcement period.

Required Documentation

Recent Graduate Program

Have you recently graduated from a qualifying educational institution or program? If yes, then explore the many opportunities available under the new Pathways Recent Graduates Program (RGP). The recent graduates program offers developmental experiences in the Federal Government in an effort to promote possible careers in civil service. To be eligible, applicants must apply within two years of degree or certificate completion except for veterans precluded from doing so due to their military service obligation. Veterans have up to six years after degree completion to apply. Additional information about the Recent Graduates Program can be found at


Presidential Management Fellows Program (PMF)
Will you complete your master’s, law, or doctoral-level degree during this academic year? If yes, we invite you to explore a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity through the Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program. The PMF Program is a two-year, paid program designed to develop future leaders committed to excellence in the leadership and management of public policies and programs. The program is highly competitive and candidates must be nominated by their graduate program’s dean, director, or chair. Upon successful completion of the program, fellows may be eligible for permanent placement within a federal agency. Click here for more information on the PMF Program.

Visit the OPM Pathways Program Website for more general information on the new Pathways program, or begin your job search today.

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Public Health Training Opportunities

We are looking for smart, ambitious people for a variety of public health training programs. If you are in college, have recently graduated or are currently working in public health, we have a place for you. Click here for more information about Public Health Training Opportunities.

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Federal Work Study Program

The CDC Federal Work-Study (FWS) Program offers students work experience in various occupations during the academic year and/or summer months. FWS at CDC exposes students to a wide arrange of opportunities, including public health careers. To qualify, students must be enrolled in an accredited college and awarded FWS packaging through their respective Financial Aid Office.

Students must apply for and be awarded federally-sponsored college work-study through their academic institution to be eligible for the work study program.

Pay and Benefits
Students receive a stipend through their school based on their year in school. Students are not eligible for federal benefits.

More Information
Students should contact their financial aid office for more information on available CDC/ATSDR work study opportunities.

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Emory Rollins Earn and Learn Program (REAL)

Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Heath Earn and Learn Program (REAL) is a program that offers MPH and MSPH students valuable opportunities to earn while they learn. The program provides funding for master’s level public health graduate students to support their academic interests with applied public health experiences in federal, state, and county agencies, as well as non-profit and for-profit organizations throughout Atlanta.

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Student Worksite Experience Program - Volunteer Service

The CDC Student Worksite Experience Program (SWEP) is a volunteer program offering unpaid, educational work opportunities to students in high school, college, graduate, and post- graduate schools. Students gain practical experience by engaging in projects and tasks that contribute to their professional development. Student volunteers are an important part of recruiting and developing skilled workers, and preparing the workforce of the future.

  • A wide variety of volunteer opportunities are available; from administrative and program support, to research- related projects.
  • Students can earn academic credit for work assignments (at the school’s discretion)
  • Students may volunteer for a maximum of 180 days per calendar year; during the academic school year and/or summer months.
  • Students earning academic credit may be approved to participate for up to one full year to complete educational requirements.
  • All applicants must pass a background investigation by the CDC security office.
  • Applicants NOT born U.S. Citizens, or who later became citizens must provide proof of U.S. citizenship. Applicants must provide a copy of their Naturalization Certificate passport, visa, or green card/ permanent resident card. Applicants born abroad as U.S. Citizens (military related) must provide a copy of the birth certificate.
  • International students attending accredited schools in the U.S. are eligible to participate with valid proof of Lawful Permanent Residency (LPR) status, or a student visa approved by the school.
  • Students attending foreign schools are NOT eligible to participate in SWEP

To participate in the Worksite Experience Program, students must:

  • Receive written permission from their school;
  • Provide proof of at least half- time enrollment in an accredited U.S. educational institution:
    • a high school or trade school;
    • a technical or vocational school;
    • a junior or community college;
    • a four-year college or university
    • a graduate or post- graduate school; or
    • any other accredited educational institution including home-school. (Students who are home-schooled must be participating in either an accredited home-school, or a home-school curriculum approved by the State.)
  • Be at least 16 years old;
  • Provide work permit or state employment certificate (for high school students and other students under 18 years old);
  • Provide written parent/ guardian consent if in high school and 18 years old or under;
  • Maintain good academic standing (minimum 2.0 GPA);
  • Complete health and safety testing e.g. TB, Hepatitis, etc. (if required by the hosting office) and;
  • Meet other qualifications specified by the hosting office.

Open volunteer opportunities are sent via email to various points of contact at partner educational institutions (i.e. Career Development Center Offices, Guidance Counselors, etc.) for distribution.

  • Contact the appropriate official at your school to determine if your school is an educational partner with CDC. If your school is a partner, request to be added to the school’s student distribution list to obtain information about open volunteer opportunities at CDC.
  • If your school is not currently a partner, ask the appropriate school official to contact the SWEP program manager and provide their name and contact information (school name, title, email address, and phone number) to be added to the SWEP educational partner group. Email contact information to the HR Customer Service Center.

If you are interested in being added to the student database, email a .PDF file of your resume to

  • CDC Hiring officials may choose to utilize the student database to fill open volunteer opportunities.
  • Ensure to provide correct contact information (i.e. email address, and phone number).
  • Students selected for opportunities will be contacted by CDC.

For additional information, contact the HR Customer Service Center; 770-488-1725;    TDY/ TDD 770-488-1228.

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Thurgood Marshall College Foundation/ CDC Student Ambassador Program and Internship

The Thurgood Marshall College Foundation/CDC Ambassador and Internship Program is designed to increase interest in public health careers among minority students, and to increase minority representation in mission critical occupations at CDC and the public health workforce. The program seeks to promote CDC as a preferred employer. Student ambassadors work at their campuses and in their communities to actively promote public service and public health among their peers as a means of making a positive difference. The ambassadors promote public health initiatives on campus and in the community, and build relationships between faculty and student groups.

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Human Resources:
    Human Resources Office
    4770 Buford Highway
    Mailstop K-15
    Atlanta, GA 30341
  • 770-488-1725
  • 770-488-1228 (TTY)
  • The U.S. Government's Official Web PortalDepartment of Health and Human Services
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