Sustainability Research Internships Summer 2017

The College is again sponsoring sustainability-related summer internships for students enrolled in undergraduate programs in the College. The purpose of these internships is to provide University of Rochester students with research-based learning experiences, working with UR faculty on sustainability research and course development projects and with UR administrators on research and development projects that contribute directly to a more sustainable UR campus.  The College will provide a $1000 scholarship and free campus housing for the months of June and July to selected students. (Please note that the offer of free campus housing cannot be converted into funds for off campus housing.) Interested students may apply by email, by sending a resume and letter of interest to Prof. Randall Curren The letter should indicate the specific internship(s) sought. Applications will close March 7 and assignments will be announced by the end of March.

Professor Randall Curren (Chair, Philosophy) will sponsor up to three (3) interns to find, research, and write up case studies in sustainability and professional ethics, especially engineering ethics.  The immediate aims will be to: (1) develop a rich set of cases to be used in a new fall 2017 course in engineering ethics; (2) to assist with the development of a book chapter on sustainability ethics across the professions and the curriculum.  A long-term goal is to develop a wide-ranging case book in sustainability ethics.  The intern(s) will undertake the search to identify interesting cases, research them, evaluate them for their instructional value, and co-author the case synopses.  For all cases that are used, interns will receive credit for co-authorship in accordance with AERA research ethics guidelines.  Qualifications: The intern(s) should have completed a substantial portion of a pre-professional major and should have some knowledge of sustainability and ethics, strong communication skills, and the ability to work independently and collaboratively.  Priority will be given to engineering, but the ideal scenario for this project would pair an engineering major with one or two more interns who will focus on sustainability and professional integrity in architecture, journalism, law, public relations, advertising, agriculture, government, or other arenas of professional practice.


Amy Kadrie (Sustainability Coordinator) will sponsor an intern who would ideally engage in both sustainability research (20 hours/week) and the duties of a Facilities Sustainability Assistant (20 hours/week). The ideal candidate will have a background and interest in environmental sustainability. The person will use independent judgment to assist the Recycling Coordinator with evaluating and improving recycling and sustainability programs, as well as with the preliminary research and proposals required for the creation of new programs.  Note: This position cannot be held along with any elected positions on student sustainability group executive boards, due to the confusion this creates in expectations and responsibilities.  Qualifications: The intern should have a background in sustainability, strong verbal and written communication skills, and effective networking and organizational skills.

Professor Jon Tresan (Philosophy) will sponsor an intern to assist him in developing a course in Environmental Ethics, which has a substantial focus on sustainability.  The intern’s tasks would include reading and evaluating teaching material in environmental ethics, screening texts for strength of sustainability content, relevance for current issues, interest, level of difficulty, and other factors.  Qualifications: The intern should have interest in environmental issues, sustainability, and ethics, strong communication skills, and ability to work independently and collaboratively.

Professor Katrina Korfmacher (Environmental Medicine) will sponsor a lead history intern to document the formation and early history of Rochester’s Coalition to Prevent Lead Poisoning. Rochester’s nationally-recognized efforts had humble beginnings around 1999 with connections between a small number of pediatricans, educators, and government staff.  Between 1999 and 2002, this small group evolved, grew, and changed names three times, by 2003 becoming a funded, well-organized, strategic group that is still recognized as one of Rochester’s most successful community collaborations.  How did this happen?  The answers are hidden in the memories of a small number of individuals and several boxes of poorly organized files.  The lead history intern will participate in, transcribe, and summarize interviews with 4-8 key players in the early days of the coalition; sort, scan, and summarize documents; and contribute to drafting the definitive history of the formation of this groundbreaking coalition.  The intern will work closely with Professor Korfmacher, as well as community partners involved in lead poisoning prevention.  Through this project, we will document and disseminate lessons learned for other communities interested in pursuing a community-based approach to lead po