The Public Health Internship program will not be offered in Spring 2015.

Please contact Dr. Leanne Field if you have questions.


Internship Description

Internships in Public Health!This internship is for undergraduate or post-baccalaureate students at UT Austin, who are interested in gaining experience in public health laboratory science or epidemiology.

Student interns will have the opportunity to conduct goal-oriented, semester-long research projects for university credit under the supervision of public health scientists in laboratory science or epidemiology. In addition to valuable research experience, student interns will gain communication skills by preparing both written and oral presentations about their completed projects. They will present their projects before an audience that includes representatives from Department of State Health Services (DSHS), Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services Department (ATCHHSD), UT and their fellow interns.

Students will be selected to participate based on merit via a competitive process without regard to race, color, religion, or gender. Completed applications will be reviewed, and students will be interviewed in person or by telephone. Selected students will be assigned research projects based on the mutual interest of the student and mentor.

Student interns must complete 180 hours of work for the semester (approximately 12 hours/week) to earn 3 hours of academic credit in BIO 361P, a substantial writing component course. They must provide their own transportation to the internship site and are responsible for obtaining necessary vaccinations, including vaccination against Hepatitis B virus. Training will be provided in safety, computer security awareness, and in the basic principles of patient' rights to privacy and confidentiality.

More about the program »

Student Evaluation

Student performance will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  1. attendance, 10%
  2. mentor's evaluations, 30%
  3. journals, 15%
  4. oral reports, 20%
  5. written reports, 25%

Application Requirements

  1. U.S. Citizenship is required for all internships carried out at the Texas Department of State Health Services (TDSHS). This is not a requirement for internships carried out at the Austin Travis County Health and Human Services Department (ATCHHSD).

  2. Enrollment at the University of Texas at Austin as a degree seeker or post-baccalaureate student.

  3. Junior standing or better with a "B" grade point average (GPA) or better, i.e. 3.0 GPA or greater.

  4. Prerequisite Coursework: BIO 326R or BIO 326M with a grade of "B" or better. For laboratory internships, BIO 126L is required.

  5. If have not completed (or are not currently enrolled in) the prerequisite coursework but believe that you may be qualified to participate because of other experiences, please e-mail Dr. Leanne Field ( to discuss your individual situation.

Application Process

  1. Request two letters of recommendation.
    1. One recommendation should be from a former or current professor.
    2. The second could be from a second professor, an academic advisor, an employment supervisor, or a sponsor of a student organization you participate(d) in.
    3. Please do not submit references from family or friends.
  2. Complete all parts of the online application form
  3. Provide a resume and a copy of your official transcript. Drop off an envelope containing your resume and an unopened copy of your UT official transcript to Dr. Leanne Field's office in Painter 1.06 or mail to Dr. Leanne Field, College of Natural Sciences, A5400, 1 University Station, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78712
  4. Participate in a group interview at the Texas Department of State Health Services.
  5. All eligible applicants will be invited to a "Meet and Greet" event with the internship mentors.


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“This internship has been the single most interesting and rewarding thing I have done in my four years at the University of Texas. Coming into the project, I knew almost nothing of molecular biology laboratory procedures or theory. However, that changed on the first day in the lab. Dr. Tanksley has since served as a fantastic teacher and mentor, helping me every step of the way and ensuring the success of this project. I feel like this project has made a positive difference not only in my life, but also in the lives of all those who are affected by the disease galactosemia as well as the families and doctors of those patients."