- Briefing Room
U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
Internship Period: June 8th - August 15th 2015
The Summer Transportation Internship Program for Diverse Groups (STIPDG) provides a unique opportunity to gain valuable professional experience and skills that will complement your academic pursuits. This hands-on program is designed to mentor and cultivate tomorrow's leaders, strengthen their understanding of the transportation industry and prepare them for future public service opportunities.
The STIPDG is a paid internship program open to all qualified candidates without regard to their race, gender, color, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, age, physical or mental disability, veteran status, or any other characteristic prohibited by state or local law.
The 2015 STIPDG application period will OPEN October 15.
Application Deadline: Selections may be made as applications are received, but typically do not occur until the application closes on January 16, 2015.
The Summer Transportation Internship Program for Diverse Groups (STIPDG) is for students in all majors.
(A) THE STIPDG PROGRAM OBJECTIVE
The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT), Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is accepting applications for the STIPDG Internship Program. Funded by the FHWA's Office of Civil Rights' On-the-Job Training Supportive Services Program, the objective of the STIPDG is to provide college/university students with hands-on experience and on-the-job training while working on current transportation-related topics and issues. The STIPDG is open to all qualified applicants but is designed to provide qualified women, persons with disabilities, and members of diverse groups with summer opportunities in transportation where these groups have been under-represented.
Please refer to the information below for the "STIPDG Eligibility Requirements" and the "How To Apply for the STIPDG/Application Requirements".
(B) THE STIPDG ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS
The United States Government does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, national origin, political affiliation, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, age, membership in an employee organization, or other non-merit factor. The STIPDG is open to all applicants based on the eligibility requirements that follow and based on the merit of the "Required Documents" requested under "C."
(C) HOW TO APPLY FOR THE STIPDG/APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS
To receive full consideration and review, applicants must complete and submit all required information and documents requested online. Refer any questions or inquiries regarding your application to the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars at (202) 238-7900 or DOTSTIPDG@twc.edu.
Application documents can also be mailed to:
STIPDG Internship Program
The Washington Center For Internships and Academic Seminars
1333 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036
(D) HOW THE STIPDG APPLICANTS WILL BE EVALUATED/SELECTED
Applicants are encouraged to submit all "Required Information" as soon as possible as selections may be identified on an on-going basis. All application packages will be reviewed, scored, and evaluated based on the merit and completeness of the "Required Criteria":
A STIPDG Panel will rate and evaluate all application packages based on a rating system.
(E) THE STIPDG DEADLINE FOR SELECTING PARTICIPANTS
The FHWA's Office of Human Resources (OHR) is responsible for selecting anywhere from 80 to 100 students, including Law, Graduate, and Undergraduate rising juniors and seniors from across the country to participate in the STIPDG. Applicants submitting COMPLETED applications will be reviewed and evaluated immediately upon receipt. The FHWA's Office of Human Resources will work with the U.S. DOT sponsoring Offices to select the final number of assignments and participants based on the availability of funding for the program, and to include a wide variety of Transportation-related disciplines. Furthermore, where possible, students selected to participate in the STIPDG will be assigned to a Mentor and project based on their areas of interest and/or majors. If applicants cannot be matched with a project based on their areas of interest and/or major, applicants may be offered assignments "not directly related" to their areas of interests and/or majors instead. All students will be notified of their status in writing via e-mail no later than May 1. Students selected for participation will have three (3) business days to reply via e-mail to the offer of employment before the offers may be made to other qualified applicants.
(F) About the STIPDG PROGRAM EXPERIENCE: MANAGEMENT/BENEFITS
STIPDG PARTICIPANTS' BENEFITS
STIPDG Stipends: Since the STIPDG experience is a special training opportunity and not a Federal job, participants do not receive annual or sick leave or other Federal Government benefits during their 10 weeks. As mentioned above, students are not Federal employees and become employees of the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars (TWC). Law and Graduate participants will receive a total stipend not-to exceed $5,000, and Undergraduate participants will receive a total stipend not- to-exceed $4,000, for their 10 weeks. The bi-weekly stipends are subject to taxation in accordance with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and are distributed via the payroll account of TWC. TWC also will be responsible for forwarding a W-4 and I-9 to all STIPDG participants for that tax year.
STIPDG Housing: During the program, participants will reside in housing procured by TWC. TWC is responsible for coordinating and paying for all housing for STIPDG participants. TWC, not the student, is responsible for all STIPDG housing arrangements. TWC verifies with the FHWA that the housing is decent, safe, FEMA-approved, and ADA-compliant and accessible. Housing will be in close proximity to the worksites for approved assignments and can include placement in the Washington, D.C. area or throughout the United States. The program only provides funding for shared housing for participants accepting assignments more than 50 miles (one-way) away from their permanent residences. Actual housing accommodations will vary by location and can include college/university quarters. Housing accommodations can and typically do require shared-living arrangements with other interns. Participants may opt not to accept the shared housing, but will not be reimbursed by TWC, U.S. DOT, FHWA, or other participating sponsoring offices, for housing obtained independently, and without the advanced written approval of TWC and the STIPDG Program Manager. Housing is provided solely for STIPDG participants and cannot be used for non-participants. Participants who fail to honor the STIPDG housing requirements will forfeit all remaining stipends and other related benefits and will be immediately removed from the program.
STIPDG Transportation and Related Travel: Through TWC, the STIPDG Program pays for all travel and transportation expenses associated with relocations for participants whose permanent residence is more than 50 miles (one-way) away from their assignment location. TWC, not the student, will be responsible for procuring and securing, all primary transportation and travel related to the participants' assignments. This specifically includes travel expenses to and from the participants' homes to their assigned summer assignment locations and back, travel associated with approved conferences, workshops, and field trips specific to the assignments, and travel associated with closeout activities in Washington, D.C. Again, this only applies when the assignment is more than 50 miles (one-way) from the participants' residence.
A Special Note Regarding College Credit: Colleges/Universities with students selected for the STIPDG are encouraged to grant three (3) academic college credits to the interns upon the completion of the program. However, the college or university officials at each institution are the authority on final decisions. Students should discuss arrangements with their institutions, prior to starting the program.
For further information about the STIPDG, Contact:
Crystal Taylor, (202) 366-2907
Frequently Asked STIPDG Q & A's
Admission to the Intern Program
|Q. 1||How do I apply?|
|A.||Please refer to Part C, HOW TO APPLY FOR THE STIPDG/APPLICATION REQUIREMENTS.|
|Q. 2||What is the deadline for applications?|
|A.||Completed Applications must be postmarked by January 16, 2015 to receive full consideration for the STIPDG.|
|Q. 3||How will applicants be evaluated for the STIPDG?|
|A.||Please refer to Part D, HOW THE STIPDG APPLICANTS WILL BE EVALUATED/SELECTED.|
|Q. 4||Must I be a U.S. Citizen to participate in the STIPDG program?|
|Q. 5||Are interviews a part of the selection process or a requirement for participation?|
|A.||Interviews are not a requirement for selection, though interviews are typically conducted, either in person or by telephone, to ensure that a potential assignment is well suited to an applicant.|
|Q. 6||I am now a senior and will graduate in the Spring; can I participate in the STIPDG?|
|A.||Students graduating in the Spring Semester may participate, if they have applied for and have a letter of acceptance to graduate school for the upcoming Fall Semester. For more details, please refer to Part B, Number (5), titled: STIPDG ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS.|
|Q. 7||I am in law school. What are the admission requirements for Law Students?|
|A.||Law Students must be entering their second or third year of law school in the Fall Semester. For more details, please refer to Part B, Number (4), titled: STIPDG ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS.|
|Q. 8||When will I be notified if I've been selected?|
|A.||Selections will be made as applications are received. All applicants will be notified of their status in writing via e-mail no later than May 1. Students selected to participate will have three (3) business days to reply by e-mail to the offer before the offer may be made to other qualified applicants.|
|Q. 9||I have been a STIPDG intern before. Am I eligible to be selected for participation again?|
|A.||Yes, previous interns may apply and are eligible for participation. However, previous participants will not be given preferential treatment in the selection process.|
Participants' Benefits and Responsibilities
|Q. 10||Do interns receive compensation? Is STIPDG a paid internship program?|
|A.||Yes, interns are given assignments that require them to work a standard 40-hour workweek for the 10-week program for which they are compensated with a bi-weekly stipend. Undergraduate students receive a total stipend of $4,000. Graduate and Law students receive total stipends of $5,000. Standard local, state, and Federal deductions will be taken based on exemption information provided by the interns. Since the participants become employees of TWC, all bi-weekly payments will be paid via TWC's payroll system, and not that of the Federal Government. All deposits will be made as direct-deposits to the participant's preferred banking institution, if proper paperwork is provided.|
|Q. 11||I am a senior and have been accepted to graduate school for the Fall term. If I am accepted into the STIPDG program and participate this summer, will I qualify for the stipend for Graduate Students?|
|A.||If you are an Undergraduate student at the time of your application, you will be considered for an assignment at the undergraduate level and will receive the stipend level paid to undergraduate interns. Only matriculating Graduate students will receive the graduate level stipend.|
|Q. 12||Will I be considered a government employee during my internship?|
|A.||No, STIPDG participants are not Federal Government employees, nor will they receive Government benefits during their 10-week internship. They will be employees of the TWC.|
|Q. 13||What is the normal work schedule and location?|
|A.||Work schedules are typically forty hours per week, comprised of eight hour days worked Monday through Friday. However, interns and Mentors may agree to modify the schedule to suit the work assignment. The work location is typically in a U.S. Department of Transportation modal administration in Washington, D.C. (Headquarters), or at a participating field location with the U.S. Territory. The work site may also include a State DOT office or partnering organizations. All assignments require a mentor employed by the Federal Government, particularly, the U.S. DOT or a U.S. DOT Operating Administration.|
|Q. 14||How is a placement site determined?|
|A.||Assignment location is based on numerous factors, the most important being the applicant's major, preference for a particular U.S. DOT Operating Administration, and to an extent, geographic preference. STIPDG program officials attempt to match these preferences with available assignments based upon further consideration of the applicant's skills, background (like courses taken in a particular area of study), and interests. Submission of all "Required Information" will ensure the immediate review and rating of your application. Delays in submitting the required information/documentation will further delay the review and referral of your application to sponsoring U.S. DOT offices that may be interested in someone with your major/s and interest/s.|
|Q. 15||Does a STIPDG internship qualify me for college credit at my college or university? How do I go about arranging to get credit for my assignment?|
|A.||The colleges and universities attended by participating interns are encouraged to grant academic credit to interns upon completion of the 10-week program. However, the college or university officials at each institution are the final authority on any decision to do so and students should discuss the granting of credit, in advance, with their respective institutions. Institutions may contact the STIPDG Program Manager to discuss the specific nature of an assignment to assess content and relevance.|
|Q. 16||What other components are there to STIPDG besides the internship?|
|A.||In addition to the internship experience, accepted students will also participate in an orientation, career development seminars, academic workshops (such as position paper writing, civic engagement projects and Legal simulations), field trips, a student symposium, closing ceremony events and other professional development elements to help students learn more about the field of transportation and the federal government. Students will receive more specifics in a syllabus and program manual before or during orientation.|
Housing, Transportation, and Expenses
|Q. 17||Is transportation provided to the assignment location?|
|A.||Yes, interns living more than 50 miles (one-way) from their assigned location will be provided transportation from their residence to the assignment location at the beginning of the program. Interns placed in assignments in field offices or sites outside of Headquarters will spend the last week of their internship in Washington D.C. attending end-of-program activities and will be provided transportation from D.C. back to their residence. Interns who choose to drive to and from their assignment location at the beginning and end of the program, in lieu of airplane fare, will be reimbursed travel costs for travel in their privately owned vehicle. Daily transportation to-and-from the internship worksite, will be the responsibility of all interns. Adequate public transportation access is always considered by the TWC prior to selecting housing accommodations.|
|Q. 18||Is housing provided?|
|A.||Yes, interns who live more than 50 miles (one-way) from their assignment location will be provided housing. In locations where there are multiple assignments, interns will be asked to share housing with one or two roommates. Participants are housed with participants of the same gender. They share living quarters in a lodging based on Government-approved standards for housing.|
|Q. 19||May I choose to secure my own housing and have the STIPDG program reimburse me for my housing costs?|
|A.||Interns may secure their own housing. However, interns wishing to use or choose their own housing will not be reimbursed nor provided a housing allowance by TWC, U.S. DOT, FHWA, or sponsoring offices.|
|Q. 20||If I drive my car to my STIPDG assignment, and I am asked to use my privately owned vehicle while performing my assignment, can I be reimbursed for expenses associated with my assignment?|
|A.||Yes, if you use your own vehicle while performing duties of your STIPDG assignment, you will be reimbursed for mileage, tolls and parking. However, you must have written approval in advance of STIPDG beginning from TWC and the STIPDG Program Manager. The Mentor will be consulted for such occurrences.|
|Q. 21||I have a family member or friend coming to visit; may they stay in the housing provided by the STIPDG Program?|
|A.||No. STIPDG housing is provided solely for STIPDG participants and cannot be used for non-participants. Participants who do not respect this rule will be asked to leave the program immediately and will forfeit all remaining stipends and other tangible and non-tangible benefits associated with the program.|