SUST 4096 Sustainability Internship & Leadership Projects

The Sustainability Internship course, SUST 4096, is offered each Fall & Spring semester.

  • Work on a sustainability project at a non-profit, business, local government or on campus.
  • Students can apply for internships identified by the course instructors, arrange an internship on their own (with the approval of the instructors), or propose a leadership project under the guidance of a faculty mentor.
  • Be part of a supportive cohort for developing professional and leadership skills & exploring strategies for leading social change in regards to sustainability.

New in Spring 2020 – Water focus! In order to advance the Institute on the Environment’s goal to assure clean water for all Minnesotans, we’re offering a series of internships that are focused on water. Look for water in the internship title to identify which are water related.  We strongly encourage all students to consider these water internships. After all, water is connected to everything and everyone! 

Instructors from the Institute on the Environment,  Lead instructor: Mary Oldham Hannemann

Fall semester: Tuesdays 4-5:15 PM, 

Spring semester: Thursdays 4-5:15 PM

Credits: 2-4 (Hours associated with internship varies from 2 credits = 4 hours/wk, 3 credits = 7 hours/wk, 4 credits = 10 hours/wk). Class time and coursework will require another 30 hours of student time throughout the semester.

You do not need to be enrolled in the Sustainability Studies Minor or have taken other sustainability classes to enroll in this class.  All students are welcome!

NEW for Fall 2019 – Spring 2020!  Ecolab Sustainability Internship Scholarships

Award: Up to $1,500 (depending on credits enrolled in for internship)
Spring 2020:  Sign up here to be contacted when applications are being accepted. Spring 2020 applications are due December 9.

Ecolab Sustainability Internship Scholarships provide support for students who are interested in an unpaid internship focused on sustainability studies and/or environmental grand challenges. The internship must meet the following criteria:

  • For Spring 2020, all interns are required to take SUST 4096 (Sustainability Internships) to deepen your experience.
  • Students need to have enrolled for the class and started the process to identify a sustainability-related internship for the fall semester before applying for the scholarship.
  • Students will need to follow up with potential internship sites to finalize the internship by the second week of the semester, preferably by the start of the semester.
  • Scholarships amount varies with size of internship: 4 credits (140 hours) $1500, 3 credits (98 hours) $1000, 2 credits (56 hours) $600.
  • A supervisor has been identified at your internship site who will verify your work hours and will help ensure that you have a good internship experience.
  • You are not receiving a salary for your internship work. Small benefits such as occasional lunches, free tickets, and parking privileges, do not count as salary. Modest stipends (less than $100 total) also do not count as salary.

Application Process:

  • Complete the online application by December 9th, and submit an unofficial transcript to
  • Candidates may be asked to attend an interview as part of the selection process.
  • Scholarship recipients will receive half the scholarship at the beginning of the internship, and half after completing the internship.