Public Sector EM Internships

One of the best ways to learn about emergency management or safety-related disciplines is to participate in a public sector internship within your local town, municipality, county, or state. While many of these internships are unpaid, they offer an opportunity to integrate into an active public safety framework that offers education through experience and networking. If you are a student enrolled in a meteorology program, this is an opportunity to apply your knowledge of weather impacts! These openings are also often listed on the International Association of Emergency Managers (IAEM) jobs board at, but don’t hesitate to make contact with a local public safety official.

Things to know:

  • Public sector internships are often unpaid, volunteer internships.

  • Many emergency management or safety-related internship vacancies may be written for those within an emergency management degree path, so reach out to the vacancy’s contact and offer your interest as a meteorologist if that is the case. 

  • Many emergency management agencies (or fire/police departments tasked with emergency management) may not have a formal internship program. If that’s the case, reach out to the agency/department and ask to volunteer after having a look at the internship ideas below.

Before you apply:

  • Learn about the agency your applying to. Look through their website, their social media feeds, and through the news to learn about the type of activities that the agency participates in. 

  • Take the four Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) courses recommended under the “Basics of Emergency Management” section of our Emergency Management Educational Resources page. These will communicate a strong interest in learning more about the field, so list them on your resume! You’ll be asked to take IS-100, 700, and 200 before starting your internship, so consider taking and listing those as well.

  • Select an internship project that you’re interested in just in case the agency does not have one prepared for you (which may often occur). We list internship project ideas on our Student Internship Project Examples page. Coming prepared with an internship idea will show agencies the value you can add to their operations by using your meteorological background. 

If you have any questions or would like some help in the application process, please contact [email protected]