The Stanback Internship Program

One of the most unique parts of being an undergraduate in the Nicholas School is the opportunity to participate in the Stanback Internship Program. I completed an internship with the program last summer and discovered last week that I would be working again this summer under the program. Funded by Duke Alumni Fred and Alice Stanback, the program allowed for nonprofits in the environmental and policy sector to hire interns and provide them with a $5,000 stipend for the summer. Internships are located throughout the United States and allow undergraduate and graduate students to apply what they have learned at Duke to real-world issues in the environment.

Last summer I worked as a Research Fellow with the Sustainable World Initiative. I had never interned in an office setting before and was unsure of what my daily tasks would be? I thought the coffee and copying interns I saw on TV, but as soon as I stepped into the SWI office I knew this wouldn’t be the case. Immediately, I felt like a valuable member of the team and was assigned to conduct research into different issues of sustainability. We spent the summer compiling a educational guide for sustainability education and created sustainability profiles for UN-recognized countries. The mentorship I received from my employers and other co-workers at SWI gave me valuable experience that I will take with me into my internship this summer. Below I attached a video from the Sustainable World Initiative to highlight some of the projects we worked on.

After going through phone, Skype and in-person interviews at the on-campus interview day (video below), I accepted a position with the National Parks Conservation Association as a Mid-Atlantic Intern working on pipeline development throughout the region.

The Stanback Internship Program provided me with valuable insight into the different types of careers available after graduation. It is a program unique to Duke and one of the highlights of my experience as a member of the Nicholas School.