The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Internship Opportunity: US Green Building Council

Article Type 

PLEASE NOTE: This opportunity is listed for reference only. The deadline to apply has passed.

This is a paid internship opportunity from outside the Rockefeller Center.

Position Type: Internship - paid

Location: Washington D.C.

Sector: Nonprofit, Research Institute

Start Date: Summer 2019

Wage or benefits: Paid

Time Commitment: 32 hours per week for 12 weeks

Desired Class Year: Open to all years, including graduate students

Desired Major or Interest: Undergraduate or graduate students whose studies and research interests include public policy, environmental science, environmental studies, public health, green building, geography, sustainability, sustainable business, or another relevant field.

Application Deadline: Rolling

Organization website:

Brief Description of the organization:

USGBC launched the National Green Schools Campaign alongside partners at the 2007 Clinton Global Initiative, committing to a vision of green schools for every child. That same year, USGBC launched the LEED for Schools rating system, which provided a leadership standard for better, healthier school buildings.

After listening to and learning from school leaders around the country, USGBC founded the Center for Green Schools in 2010, broadening its foundational work in the green building movement to encompass topics and issues important to schools and the people in them every day: teachers, students, staff, and parents.

We have reinforced our belief that healthy learning environments lead to thriving communities with the publication of original research and policy analysis, and we have increased the introduction of green schools legislation in U.S. states by five-fold. To support high-quality education for sustainability, we created and maintain Learning Lab, which offers over 500 lessons in English and Spanish from a dozen partners, all aligned with curriculum standards.

Our staff and volunteers have worked to establish the U.S. Department of Education’s Green Ribbon Schools award program in dozens of states, strengthening the program’s “three pillars” of a green school as unifying criteria for the movement. This criteria is now used by organizations in 32 countries around the world.

Brief Description of the Intern’s role or key qualifications:

The intern will provide support for the project described below and as-needed support to additional, high-priority team projects throughout the summer. The position requires entrepreneurship and active communication, and successful candidates will be able to work well both independently and in teams.

Research paper on green building requirements:

The intern will complete the second phase of a research paper on state-level green building requirements and legislation in the US. Each year, the Center for Green Schools publishes a research paper analyzing state laws on a specific green schools topic. The work on this paper will begin in spring 2019 and be carried forward by the summer intern.

  • Become familiar with the research and draft that was completed by the spring 2019 intern. Determine gaps to be filled and necessary next steps.
  • Create a plan for the completion and publication of the research paper.
  • Interview stakeholders whose knowledge and experience can inform the content of the paper.
  • Draft the final research paper with guidance from the Center for Green Schools team. database maintenance:

The resource library connects all school communities with free, publicly-available resources from a variety of sources, including webinars, case studies, promising practices and collaboration.

  • Assist in researching k-12 best practice sustainability resources and updating the database with new policies and documents related to topics ranging from waste management to green cleaning to renewable energy.

Promotional support for school board advocacy toolkit:

The was developed to make district-level green schools advocacy more approachable and actionable. Released in summer 2018, it equips users with talking points, template letters and presentations, example policies, and more, so they can promote more sustainable policy options within their local school districts.

  • Assist in collecting and packaging stories and examples of local advocacy in action for distribution on online and social media channels.
  • Conduct research around additional opportunities to promote the toolkit and encourage its use by individuals outside of existing USGBC networks.

School District Superintendent event:

Refine and execute the team’s strategy to engage and educate school district superintendents

  • Tasks may include: researching school system leaders and the sustainability and best practice policies they have implemented supporting development of an event plan and fundraising strategy for efforts in 2020

Other Required Skills and Qualifications:

  • Strong research and writing skills Excellent communication, organizational and computer skills (MS Office)
  • A strong and demonstrated interest in sustainability and USGBC’s mission

Students who have some experience with the LEED rating system and sustainability action and implementation will be particularly well-suited for this position. Candidates should be currently enrolled in a college or university. At least two years of study at a college or university is preferred.

How to apply:

Please email or fax your resume and a letter of interest.

Note the title of the position you are applying for. Submit files as PDFs or Word documents.

Fax: 202-315-3949. No phone calls, please.

Apply here:

This is a paid internship from outside the Rockefeller Center. Such opportunities are posted in an effort to help students find a leave-term internship experience in public policy or a social sciences related area. Such postings do not constitute an endorsement by the Center of the political objectives of any one person or organization.

Outside Opportunities 
The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences