Environmental/Analytics Intern

King County   Seattle, WA   Full-time     Engineering
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Posted on October 16, 2020

The Solid Waste Division of the Department of Natural Resources and Parks of King County is seeking an enthusiastic and motivated candidate for an internship! This position will assist the solid waste rate and zero waste of resources teams in analyzing potential policies and modeling their effects over time.  This will include understanding the financial implications of various decisions and forecasting the impacts on the region’s waste stream. 

Zero Waste of Resources and Rate Restructure Projects:  King County has a goal of achieving Zero Waste of Resources by 2030.  Waste characterization studies show that 70% of the materials that are landfilled each year have remaining economic value.  Zero Waste seeks to divert these materials away from the disposal stream and into higher and better uses, which is an important step towards the development of a circular economy.  The division is currently developing an implementation plan for Zero Waste, and a key component of this internship will be to help model the effects of different policy actions on the disposal stream.

The Rate Restructure Project is designed to help the division align its revenue model with its strategic goals, especially surrounding Zero Waste.  Approximately 90% of the revenues for the division are derived from disposal fees, while most of the expenditures are fixed.  This means that as tonnage is diverted to achieve Zero Waste goals, the division’s revenues are seriously eroded, which negatively impacts ratepayers.  The division is evaluating options for restructuring its revenue to create a more sustainable business model, and a key component of the internship will be working on rate structure design and modeling.

The work associated with this position will be performed remotely on a permanent basis.  There will be situations where the employee is required to report to a County worksite. Employees must reside in WA state and within a reasonable distance to their King County worksite to respond to workplace reporting requirements. 

An open house will be held on Wednesday, October 21, 2020 from 11:30 am till 12:30 pm for interested candidates over Skype.  At this open house, you will have opportunities to ask questions about this internship. To join the open house, please call into, passcode 422149#.

Who May Apply: This position is open to full-time students in an undergraduate or graduate degree program. This is a year-long internship and if you are not available to work throughout the school year, you may not qualify for this position. 

Internship Length: Duration is for one year with up to two, one-year renewals possible while the student is enrolled full-time in an undergraduate or graduate program at an accredited university.

Work Schedule: Interns work up to 15 to 20 hours/week during the school year and 40-hours/week during the summer with maximum hours limited to 900 hours per year. 

Work Location: Primarily teleworking and the King Street Center - 201 South Jackson Street, Suite 701, Seattle, WA

Compensation Details: This is a paid internship.  Student interns are ineligible for benefits but do receive a free transit (ORCA) pass.

  • Undergraduate Student Intern (Intern II) - $17.78 to $22.54 (Pay range 26)
  • Graduate Student Intern (Intern III) - $20.02 to $25.37 (Pay Range 31)
Generally, student interns begin at Step 1 of their pay range. Pay rates above Step 1 may be offered in certain circumstances based upon the intern’s program of study, experience, and class standing.
Application Materials Required: A King County online application and cover letter that describe (1) Your interest in the position(s) and how both you and King County Solid Waste will benefit from your employment and (2) How your background and experience demonstrate creativity, initiative and an ability to communicate well with others.

If considered for an interview, please be prepared to provide proof of full-time enrollment in an accredited college or university, transcript, and proof of cumulative grade point average. Proof of enrollment and eligibility to work is required upon hire.

Potential for Student Learning in This Internship:
  • The intern will exercise skills in communication, collaboration, research, project development, and implementation, and will become familiar with the structure and organization of King County government.
  • The intern will improve project management skills.
  • The intern will improve the understanding of waste prevention/recycling programs, policy, product stewardship, and hazardous waste management.
  • The intern will gain expertise in working on project teams.
  • The intern will gain expertise in culturally and audience-appropriate outreach and education project planning.

Example of Intern Responsibilities:
Under direct supervision, the student will:
  • Assist with analysis on potential Zero Waste of Resources (ZWR) actions including estimating costs, greenhouse gas impacts, equity and social justice impacts, and how much waste could be diverted to better use through these actions.
  • Become familiar with and serve as a backup on using internal models (Excel) for ZWR and Rate Restructure analysis.
  • Assist with analysis on developing a curbside low-income discount program to mitigate disproportionate impacts from rate increases on these customers.
  • Assist in developing written documents, briefings, visuals, etc. in regards to ZWR and the Rate Restructure.
  • Assist with other recycling and environmental services projects, as needed.
  • Assist and contribute to process improvement efforts.

Internship Requirements and Qualifications
  • Basic knowledge of the principles of hazardous waste management, waste management, waste reduction and recycling, and/or basic knowledge of financial modeling, economics, statistics, or data analytics.
  • Good communication and interpersonal skills.
  • Good written, analytical, and organizational skills.
  • Experience working with or basic knowledge of King County residents who speak languages other than English.
  • Working knowledge of software products used in an office environment, including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, SharePoint, and Outlook.
  • Self-motivated, flexible, and able to work independently.
  • Enrolled full time in an undergraduate or graduate program at an accredited university.

Who to Contact: If you have questions about this position and wish to know more about the Solid Waste Division contact lhonaker@kingcounty.gov. If you have questions about how to apply or other questions about this recruitment, please contact Prakash Meloot at  prakash.meloot@kingcounty.gov

Supplemental Information

Forbes recently named King County as one of Washington State's best employers.

Together, with leadership and our employees, we're changing the way government delivers service and winning national recognition as a model of excellence. Are you ready to make a difference? Come join the team dedicated to serving one of the nation's best places to live, work and play.

Guided by our "True North", we are making King County a welcoming community where every person can thrive. We value diversity, inclusion and belonging in our workplace and workforce. To reach this goal we are committed to workforce equity. Equitable recruiting, support, and retention is how we will obtain the highest quality workforce in our region; a workforce that shares and will help advance our guiding principles--we are one team; we solve problems; we focus on the customer; we drive for results; we are racially just; we respect all people; we lead the way; and we are responsible stewards. We encourage people of all backgrounds and identities to apply, including Native American and people of color, immigrants, refugees, women, LGBTQ+, people living with disabilities, and veterans.

King County is an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) Employer
No person is unlawfully excluded from employment opportunities based on race, color, religion, national origin, sex (including gender identity, sexual orientation and pregnancy), age, genetic information, disability, veteran status, or other protected class. Our EEO policy applies to all employment actions, including but not limited to recruitment, hiring, selection for training, promotion, transfer, demotion, layoff, termination, rates of pay or other forms of compensation.

To Apply
If you are interested in pursuing this position, please follow the application instructions carefully. If you need this announcement in an alternate language or format, would like to request accommodation or assistance in the application or assessment process or if you have questions please contact your recruiter listed on this job announcement.

This position is not eligible for leave, holiday, insured, or other benefits.

Will you be a full-time student during the school year of 2020-2021?
  • Yes
  • No
If yes, from the choices below, please select your graduation date (select the closest date).
  • December, 2020
  • June 2021
  • December 2021
  • June 2022
  • After June 2022
  • Already graduated
Do you have the basic knowledge of the principles of hazardous waste management, waste management, waste reduction, and recycling?
  • Yes
  • No
Do you have basic knowledge of financial modeling, economics, statistics, or data analytics?
  • Yes
  • No
If you answered 'Yes' to question 3 or 4, please briefly describe the source of your knowledge.

Required Question