Sustainability Internship Program

Offering hands-on learning experiences for University of Illinois at Chicago undergraduate students that advance the overall mission of greater social, economic, and environmental sustainability in the campus community.

This unique, multi-year program provides an intellectual framework for students to apply classroom learning to project-based engagement. Since summer 2014 we have connected over 200 students to sustainability projects on UIC's campus.

Open to UIC undergraduate students only, students from fields of engineering, architecture, urban studies, public health, nursing, and liberal arts and sciences, have completed the program. Students have been placed in internships across the campus, in units such as Campus Housing, Dining Services, the Children’s Center, Capital Programs, Campus Utilities, Facilities Management, Civil Engineering, the Center for Literacy, the Energy Initiative, Gallery 400, UI Hospital, and the School of Dentistry, as well as outside partners such as The Field Museum and the One Earth Film Festival. Projects vary from waste reduction initiatives and community outreach, to data research and  water conservation, and much more.

The Students

  • What is SIP?

    The Sustainability Internship Program (SIP) is a multi-year program that starts with a for-credit (US/PUBH 390) spring course.  SIP offers an internship placement at a UIC department or affiliated organization, weekly seminars, (remote) field outings that cover a range of educational and skill building topics, leadership development and project management experience.

    AVAILABLE 2021 INTERNSHIPS – please check back often, this list will be updated regularly:

    Bicycle Internship

    Campus Energy and Greenhouse Gas Inventory Internship

    Campus Composting Internship

    Food Recovery Internship

    Green Labs Internship

    Life Cycle Analysis UI Hospital Internship 

    Outreach and Education IFSC Internship

    Recycling Internship

    Sustainable Grounds Internship

    Sustainable Mobility Internship 

    Transportation Data Collection & Analysis Internship

    We Compost IFSC Internship

    Zero Waste Green Team Internship 

  • What are the Seminars?

    Seminar topics include environmental, cultural, and energy sustainability issues,  institutional challenges and change management, campus structure and administration, campus sustainability programs, and job readiness.

  • Intern Expectations

    Interns are expected to develop a work plan and project goals, meet regularly with an experienced mentor, share experiences with other SIP interns, attend weekly seminars and outings, and present their project results at a virtual poster presentation.

  • Spring Internship Program

    The spring internship is a for-credit class held during the semester (US/PUBH390); in addition to a weekly 1.25 hour seminar, students are required to commit approximately eight (8) hour a week to their assigned internship.

    NEW FOR SPRING 2021: The spring 2021 class will be synchronous (Thursday 2:00-3:15) with some internships entirely remote while other internships may require some work on campus.    Spring 2021 syllabus will be available in December 2020.  Check back often for updates! Contact Sarah Koning ( for more information.

    Although the course is cross listed in the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs and the School of Public Health, all majors are welcome and encouraged to apply.

    Successful completion of the spring internship program guarantees  undergraduate students an internship in the paid summer 2021 program!



  • Summer Internship Program

    Information about the summer 2021 program will be available in spring 2021.

    Priority is given to students who successfully complete the spring internship program. 

    Successful completion of the summer program guarantees registered, undergraduate students continued employment with the Office of Sustainability as a student mentor for future cohorts!


  • How to Apply

    Applications for summer 2020 are now closed! Check back in spring 2021 for more information.

What SIP students do.

SIP in the UIC News

Faculty & Staff: Interested in Mentoring a Student?