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The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Internship and Clerkship Program are unique opportunities and come with a high level of responsibility. As an intern, you will work on a wide variety of assignments including: researching environmental issues, assisting the staff in drafting documents, fact checking, administrative tasks to support the work of CEQ, and other duties as assigned.

Internship Program

CEQ interns are supervised by CEQ Staff, and provide critical research and writing assistance on a range of environmental policies such as: implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), environmental justice, sustainability, climate change, resilience, public lands, water, and transportation. Through CEQ’s participation in policy processes across the Federal government, interns have the opportunity to perform diverse and substantive policy work. The office environment is fast paced, so accuracy and attention to detail are absolute requirements. 

Qualifications Needed 

CEQ seeks undergraduate students, graduate students, and recent college graduates who are:

  • Highly motivated
  • Willing to contribute where needed
  • Ability to handle fast pace and quick turnaround assignments
  • Excellent communications skills
  • Ability to exercise professional judgment and maturity
  • Computer literacy

There are no curricular requirements for selection as an intern; however, CEQ prefers applicants who have completed relevant coursework, and whose work experience demonstrates a commitment to environment, climate change, or natural resource issues.

CEQ offers part-time and full-time (40 hours per week) internships but requires a minimum commitment of 16 hours per week. This is an unpaid internship, and if selected and upon request, CEQ will provide you information you may need to help secure funding, stipends, or credits through your school. Applicants must be a U.S. Citizen and if selected will be required to undergo a background check.

CEQ may consider applications from prospective interns on a rolling basis. However, we encourage applicants to abide by the following dates and deadlines:

SessionStart and End DateApplication Deadline
SummerMay – AugustLast Friday in March
FallSeptember – DecemberLast Friday in July
SpringJanuary – April Last Friday in November

Internship Application: Link to Download CEQ Internship Application

Due to the large volume of applications submitted to the CEQ Internship Program, we are not able to confirm receipt of your application. However, if selected for an interview, you can expect to be contacted within three to four weeks after an application deadline has passed.

Note: The White House has a zero-tolerance policy for drug use. You will be required to take a drug test prior to beginning your internship. Failure to pass the drug test will result in disqualification.

Clerkship Program

CEQ seeks highly motivated 2Ls, 3Ls, and recent graduates for full-time (preferred) or part-time fall, spring, and summer legal clerkships in CEQ’s Office of the General Counsel. Clerks provide critical research and writing assistance to both legal and policy staff on a variety of matters pertinent to CEQ’s functions. Through CEQ’s participation in policy processes across the Federal Government, clerks have the opportunity to perform diverse substantive legal work, which may include drafting memoranda on environmental, energy, natural resources, infrastructure, and general law issues; contributing to efforts to ensure that CEQ and the Federal Government meaningfully consult with Tribal Nations on issues affecting them; tracking Federal agency actions on environmental and infrastructure issues; attending interagency working group meetings; and assisting with responses to Freedom of Information Act requests and other inquiries regarding CEQ’s activities. They may also help advise CEQ’s policy teams on legal issues; analyze recent case law; and analyze significant draft regulations through CEQ’s participation in the interagency regulatory review process under Executive Order 12866.

Program Requirements:

Applicants must be highly motivated, willing to contribute where needed, and able to exercise professional judgment and maturity. In addition, applicants must be U.S. citizens. Although there are no specific course prerequisites, CEQ generally prefers applicants who have completed courses in environmental or natural resources law, administrative law, or statutory interpretation, and whose work, volunteer, and other experience demonstrates a commitment to environment, energy, or natural resources issues. CEQ will work with students who seek school credit for their uncompensated service.

Note: The White House has a zero-tolerance policy for drug use. Law clerks must take a drug test prior to beginning the clerkship. Failure to pass the drug test will result in immediate disqualification.

Application Process:

Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and are due on the following dates:

  • For fall semester clerkships, the last Friday in June (August 25 for fall 2021);
  • For spring semester clerkships, the last Friday in October; and
  • For summer clerkships, the last Friday in December.

Clerkship Application: Link to Download Clerkship Application Instructions

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