About the SAWSC Student Corps

The United States Geological Survey’s (USGS) South Atlantic Water Science Center (SAWSC) offers part-time and full time entry-level, paid positions in North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia to current students and recent graduates. These positions are ideally suited for talented individuals seeking hands on experience in environmental science, hydrology, physical science, and biological sciences. If you are interested in field work and in building your technical skills as part of a team of expert technicians and scientists focused on water resources in the Southeast U.S., then we want you to be part of the SAWSC Student Corps! Positions for administrative support and information technology may also be available.

More about SAWSC and the USGS.

south atlantic science center locations map

Position Locations
  • Georgia: Norcross, Tifton, Savannah
  • North Carolina: Raleigh, Charlotte, Asheville
  • South Carolina: Columbia, Charleston
  • Remote "virtual" opportunities are offered
  • Contact us at gs-sawscsc@usgs.gov for information about upcoming vacancies

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  • Be at least 18 years of age
  • US Citizenship
  • Possess a valid driver’s license
  • Show proof of full vaccination against COVID-19
  • Be enrolled in good standing or a recent graduate (< 1 yr ago) at an accredited High School, College or University
  • Be able to pass a background check

Build technical skills while collecting water resource data.

collecting data in a boat
Compensation based on education and experience (*)
  • High School Diploma: $15.00/hr
  • 1+ Years of College: $16.15/hr
  • 2+ Years of College: $16.65/hr
  • BA/BS Degree (Recent Graduate): $18.63/hr
  • BA/BS Degree with Superior Academic Achievement: $23.08/hr
  • MA/MS: $33.35/hr
  • PhD: $39.97/hr

* Pay scale may vary by position or location, see job announcement.

What you need to apply
  • A statement of interest
  • A list of relevant courses or transcript
  • An up-to-date resume
  • Name, contact information and relationship to at least two academic or professional references
If you are selected for a position

You will have approximately 2 weeks to complete additional application forms, and work will begin 6-8 weeks after all forms are completed. Once hired, students will complete required online training to operate government vehicles, obtain a USGS email address, and to access government computer systems. Additional training will be determined on an as-needed basis. Students will be issued an official ID card. Assistance with these requirements will be provided to selectees.

Student Employment Programs
  • Pathways Internship Program
    • Currently available Pathways internships will be listed on USAJOBS
  • Field Assistant
    • Part or Full Time
    • Personal transportation to one of the office locations listed above is required
  • Student Contractor
    • Part or Full Time
    • Remote "virtual" and field-based positions
  • Other Student Opportunities
    • USGS Internships and other Student/Recent Graduate Job Opportunities

Currently Employed Students
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Michelle Morency, Student Contractor

Undergraduate Degree: Geology and Chemistry at Northland College in Wisconsin
Current Studies: Earth Science North Carolina State University
SAWSC Location: Raleigh, NC
SAWSC Projects: Delaware River Basin (DRB) trying to predict chloride concentrations at a given site using real-time data such as specific conductance. Other project work includes LiDAR, water quality, and geophysics based tasks.

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Jackie Welles, Student Contractor

Undergraduate Degree: Environmental Science & focus in Engineering from North Carolina State University
Graduate Degree: Biological & Agricultural Engineering from North Carolina State University
SAWSC Location: Raleigh, NC
SAWSC Projects: The first is a project with the Chesapeake Bay Program where I am measuring floodplain flood attenuation ecosystem services of the Schuylkill River Watershed, Pennsylvania using hydrologic and raster datasets. The second project is in partnership with The Nature Conservancy where we are quantifying differences in flood risk under alternative land restoration scenarios for flood-vulnerable communities in the Cape Fear River Basin, North Carolina using HEC-RAS and SWAT modeling.

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Kaitlyn Elliott, Student Contractor

Undergraduate Degree: Environmental Science from the University of Virginia
Current Studies: Environmental Management with a focus in Water Resources from Duke University Nicholas School of the Environment
SAWSC Location: Raleigh, NC
SAWSC Projects: Monitoring and assessment of the French Broad River before, during, and after I-26 construction with Charles Stillwell and Evaluating the effects of urbanization and BMP implementation on stream ecosystems in Clarksburg, Maryland with Rosemary Fanelli.