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Cardinal Quarter

2024 Environmental Policy Internships in CA (EPIC): San Francisco Department of the Environment - Toxic Reduction & Healthy Communities Program

Environmental Sustainability

About EPIC:

The State of California is a leader in developing cutting-edge policies in response to climate change and other environmental and natural resource challenges.  Other states, the federal government and nations follow and seek to imitate California's forward-thinking public policy efforts. The Stanford Woods Institute identifies key state agencies and decision-makers who are addressing these pressing environmental issues to create exciting summer internship placement opportunities for Stanford undergraduates.

Woods, in collaboration with the Haas Center for Public Service and Stanford in Government, offers undergraduates paid summer internships that provide a hands-on introduction to environmental policy work. The fellowships are full-time (35-40 hours/week) for 10 or 12 consecutive weeks. Students who are selected will receive mentoring from environmental professionals and directly contribute to solving important sustainability challenges that are facing the public. EPIC fellows receive a $7,500 - $9,000 stipend (for 10 weeks) or $9,000 - $10,500 (for 12 weeks of work), depending on financial need.

About the San Francisco Department of the Environment

The San Francisco Department of the Environment provides solutions that protect the environment and enhance quality of life for all San Franciscans, and beyond. For more information on the Department of the Environment, visit

About the Toxics Reduction & Healthy Communities Program:

The Toxics Reduction & Healthy Communities Program leads a variety of programs, policies and projects, ranging from reducing the use of harmful chemicals in residential, commercial and City government settings. Projects and programs we undertake at the local level often become models for scaling elsewhere! Current initiatives include:

  • eliminating the use of fluorochemicals in numerous consumer and industrial uses
  • tackling antibiotic resistance
  • supporting small businesses to adopt sustainable practices
  • addressing microfiber pollution

Potential Projects:

  • Help implement the San Francisco Healthy Nail Salon Program
  • Conduct outreach to residents about proper disposal of toxics products
  • Researching products and identifying safer alternatives to toxic products
  • Analyzing grocer data and assisting with public reporting of antibiotics use
  • Improving our grocer reporting system for antibiotics use data
  • Conducting outreach and technical assistance to commercial businesses and residents
  • Assisting in creating policies and programs that drive the use of safer products in San Francisco
  • Drafting policy and outreach documents
  • Conducting surveys and analyzing results

Desired Qualifications/Skills:

  • Data heads, you are welcome here! We would love to leverage your ability to prepare reports, spreadsheets, data and documentation for reporting information to the public.
  • Enjoy writing? We have many needs for public-facing materials including factsheets, web pages, presentations, etc.
  • Do you have phone super powers? Research by our department often involves making phone calls to a wide range of businesses, residents and other stakeholders. Those who are persistent enough to navigate a phone tree and find the right person, and then have an engaging phone voice are gold.
  • Are you confident, self-motivated and a well-organized individual?
  • Can you analyze and synthesize information from various sources?
  • Second language commonly spoken in San Francisco, especially Vietnamese, Spanish and/or Chinese.

If any or all the above sounds like you, then join us and be a part of making the world a better place, starting in San Francisco!


  • This opportunity will be fully in-person or hybrid with 3 days per week in-person at the SFE office in San Francisco, CA.
  • EPIC fellows have the option to work full-time (35+ hours per week) for 10 weeks (stipend: $7,500-$9,000, depending on financial need) or 12 weeks (stipend: $9,000-$10,500, depending on financial need) over the summer.



Undergraduates from all academic disciplines are encouraged to apply, and applicants may vary in academic interests, public service involvement, and experience. Students must be enrolled for winter and spring quarters of this year and be in good academic standing to be eligible for a fellowship. Applications will only be accepted from students who will be enrolled as undergraduates for the following academic year, so unfortunately, graduating seniors cannot apply. The one exception to this rule is seniors who will be working toward a co-term degree during the following academic year. Co-term students must be paying undergraduate tuition in spring quarter to be eligible. Please refer to the Haas Center for Public Service's website for additional Cardinal Quarter Undergraduate Fellowship Program Policies and Requirements.

Note: students are only eligible for one Stanford-funded full-time experiential learning opportunity during the summer, and are not permitted to engage in another full-time internship, job, coursework, or volunteer opportunity. Students are responsible for arranging and paying for their own housing and transportation during the fellowship.


Fellows are required to work at least 35 hours/week for ten or twelve consecutive weeks at their placements. Fellows are expected to have a designated full-time professional staff member as their supervisor/mentor. Please review the entire FAQs section for program policies. Other commitments include the following:

Spring Quarter:

  • Commit to working full-time (35-40 hours week) for 10 or 12 consecutive weeks (depending on which option you select)
  • Complete an online program orientation through the Haas Center for Public Service
    • This will include designing a personal learning plan that you will share with your site supervisor and academic mentor
  • Complete the Engaging in Ethical and Effective Service in-person workshop or worksheet
  • Meet with your assigned Stanford academic mentor at least once prior to the start of the fellowship (more check-ins during and after your experience are encouraged)
  • Attend EPIC cohort building events and activities in spring quarter, as your schedule allows
  • Complete and submit all required forms and paperwork

Summer Quarter:

  • Engage in your full-time fellowship (starting no later than July 8, 2024; exact start date to be determined with your site supervisor)
  • Attend EPIC cohort building events and activities in the summer, as your schedule allows
  • Submit a mid-summer evaluation
  • Submit a final project report, complete a program evaluation, and correspond with donor(s) as requested by program staff

Fall Quarter:

  • Debrief with your academic mentor at least once
  • Attend a de-briefing meeting for the purpose of reflecting upon and evaluating summer experiences
  • Participate in outreach activities to share your experiences and help publicize the program




United States


April 7, 2024 | 11:59 PM
* This Application Deadline has passed

Open To


Offered By

Stanford in Government
Woods Institute for the Environment
Haas Center for Public Service
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