Summer Internships at NACCHO

Did you know that NACCHO has internship positions year round? Every fall, spring, and summer, NACCHO recruits and selects a handful of talented students or recent graduates to learn about local public health and refine their professional skill sets. Interns are assigned to a specific team with a subject matter area of focus, which allows them to delve into projects that focus on issues that best align with their skills and interests. During their time at NACCHO, interns have the opportunity to network with leaders in public health practice and lay a foundation for a successful career.

NACCHO offers a wide array of internships with varied scopes and content. Some internships are multidisciplinary in nature, while others might be more academic and focused on a specific research project. Currently, NACCHO offers internships focused on law, event planning, communications, epidemiology, and policy. Intern activities and assignments can range from communicating news and information with local health departments and regional stakeholders to conducting background research in policy development to writing posts for the Preparedness Brief Blog. NACCHO offers interns an informed perspective as to how local public health fits into the larger U.S. public health system, which more broadly encompasses the private sector and all levels of government.

Below is a brief introduction to NACCHO’s current summer class of interns focusing in public health preparedness and environmental health:

Kelly Carlson is a legal intern on the Environmental Health and Public Health Law teams working on a hydraulic fracturing fact sheet and blog posts, researching local regulations regarding the management of unaccompanied minors during emergencies, and researching other local health regulations such as electronic cigarette usage and advertising. She is originally from New Jersey, with some roots in Chicago, and moved to the DC area to attend her undergraduate institution, James Madison. She then worked as a business and technology consultant in her previous career but decided to pursue a Juris Doctor at American University, Washington College of Law.

Sarah Gardner attends Southern Illinois University Carbondale where she will finish degrees in photojournalism and photography. Sarah is capturing photo and video at site visits and events for NACCHO, including the Safety Village exercise in Atlanta and an Alexandria MRC site visit in Northern Virginia. She is also developing infographics, logos, and fact sheets for NACCHO.

Kayli Plotner will begin her master’s program at Indiana University Purdue University at Indianapolis in August, studying healthcare public relations. She is from the small town of Oakwood, IL, just outside Champaign-Urbana. Kayli has been providing communications support for NACCHO conferences, including the upcoming NACCHO Annual conference and the 2015 Preparedness Summit. She is also developing presentations and infographics for several NACCHO reports.

Chris Mills is a recent graduate of Roger Williams University where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology supported by minors in Anthropology, Sociology and Public Health. He has research experience in marine fisheries but is making a transition into the world of public health though his work at NACCHO. Here he is working on developing maps of radiation treatment centers in relation to nuclear power plants and conducting analysis or current climate change crises.

If interested in learning more about future student opportunities at NACCHO, please contact Sara Rubin at, or view NACCHO’s current internship opportunities here.

About Chris Mills

Chris is a Senior Program Assistant at NACCHO. His work is centered on catastrophic response and public health security with specific interest in climate change, as well as critical infrastructure.

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