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CDC Elemental Analysis Internship

CDC Office and Location: A research opportunity is currently available with the Division of Laboratory Sciences (DLS) within the National Center for Environmental Health (NCEH) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is one of the major operation components of the Department of Health and Human Services. CDC works to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

Research Project: The project involves quantifying total elemental concentrations in blood, serum, or urine using inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry, and designing, developing, and validating analytical methods to detect human exposure to inorganic chemicals. 

Learning Objectives: Training opportunities may include:

  • Laboratory safety within a level 2 biological safety laboratory (BSL-2)
  • Quality control (QC) and quality assurance (QA) processes such as those required by the 1988 Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments act (CLIA 88)
  • Theory, use, optimization, troubleshooting, and maintenance of quadrupole ICP-MS for multi-element analysis (e.g. cadmium, lead, and uranium) of urine or blood
  • Sample and reagent preparation techniques for trace element analysis of urine or blood within a cleanroom
  • Operation and programming of automated, robotic sample preparation station
  • Method troubleshooting and validation

Mentor(s)The mentor(s) for this opportunity is Jeffery Jarrett ( If you have questions about the nature of the research please contact the mentor(s).

Anticipated Appointment Start Date:  November 1, 2022.  Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year, but may be renewed for up to five years upon recommendation of CDC and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time.

Participant StipendThe participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience. 

Citizenship RequirementsThis opportunity is available to U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR), and foreign nationals. Non-U.S. citizen applicants should refer to the Guidelines for Non-U.S. Citizens Details page of the program website for information about the valid immigration statuses that are acceptable for program participation.

ORISE InformationThis program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and CDC. Participants do not become employees of CDC, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.

The successful applicant(s) will be required to comply with Environmental, Safety and Health (ES&H) requirements of the hosting facility, including but not limited to, COVID-19 requirements (e.g. facial covering, physical distancing, testing, vaccination).

Questions: Please visit our Program Website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process please email and include the reference code for this opportunity.

The qualified candidate should have received a bachelor's degree in one of the relevant fields. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date.

Preferred Skill:

  • Experience with inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS) is advantageous
  • A strong background in instrument maintenance, solution preparation, and Microsoft Excel