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Student Internships
The Orange County Sheriff-Coroner Department, Forensic Science Services Division is accepting applications for 2008 summer internships. For earliest consideration, application should be submitted by March 1st.

All intern positions with the Forensic Science Services Division are unpaid. Applicants are generally expected to have, or be close to obtaining, a baccalaureate degree (BS) in a natural science or a closely related field. Once an application is made, the selection process includes a review of application materials, an interview and a thorough background investigation. Prior to submitting your application material, please read the following information carefully.

Intern Position Description:
Position Title: Forensic Science Services Intern (unpaid internship)

Name and Location of Agency/Department Requesting Intern:
Orange County Sheriff-Coroner Department
Forensic Science Services Division
320 North Flower Street
Santa Ana, CA 92703

Functions of Agency/Department:
The Orange County Sheriff's Department is a modern, progressive law enforcement agency dedicated to protecting the peace and enhancing the quality of life for everyone in the County of Orange. The Forensic Science Services Division provides scientific support to the law enforcement agencies and criminal justice system in Orange County by applying sound scientific principles to the collection; through evaluation and interpretation of physical evidence; and by providing expert testimony and scientific support whenever needed.

Intern Duties/Responsibilities:
Duties may vary, depending on current project needs. Projects are usually related to technical method development, validation studies and reference material calibration or maintenance.
Assignments may provide experience related to the following activities:
  • Analysis of controlled substances and clandestine laboratory materials
  • Identification and comparison of evidence such as hair, fibers, paint, glass, fire debris, explosives and gunshot residues
  • Location and identification of body fluids, including DNA analysis
  • Firearms and toolmarks analysis
  • Breath or blood alcohol analysis
  • Ante-mortem screening and identification of drugs and toxic materials in blood and urine samples
  • Post-mortem detection, identification, quantization and interpretation of drugs in post-mortem blood and tissue samples
Educational Requirements:
Those applying for an internship with the crime laboratory are expected to have completed at least their second year at an accredited college or university. They must be pursuing or have completed a bachelor's degree in forensic science, chemistry, biochemistry, biology or a closely related scientific field.

Skills, Training or Qualifications:
Applicants must be familiar with basic scientific principles. Specific skill requirements will vary depending upon available projects.

Training and Supervision that will be Provided by the Agency/Department:
The program provides an opportunity for interns to gain hands-on experience and training by participating in the operation of the Forensic Science Services Division. Interns will be exposed to a variety of analytical tasks and will be directly supervised and mentored by working Forensic Scientists.

Time Commitment:
Internships require 10 – 20 hours per week for 8 – 10 weeks. In addition to hours required for initial orientation and training, individual projects may require 60 – 80 hours to complete. Schedules may vary, depending on specific tasks and intern availability. Typically, hours can be scheduled between 7 a.m. – 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. Applicants willing to schedule additional hours or extend the duration of their internship typically gain a more in-depth experience.

Benefits Available to Intern:
The internship offers participants an excellent experience in working within a large, full-service forensic laboratory. It also provides an opportunity for interns to explore career options, gain knowledge and skills, build resumes and network with professionals in the forensic science environment.

Application Process:
The application process starts with the submission of a resume, cover letter and official or unofficial transcript(s) to the contact listed below.
  • The cover letter is an opportunity for applicants to describe career and academic goals and to elaborate upon personal accomplishments. Please include GPA, preferred start and end dates for the internship along with alternate dates, number of hours that can be scheduled on a weekly basis and days/timeframes available to schedule internship hours.
  • The resume must include relevant scientific education, work experiences and community involvement.
  • The transcript(s) (official or unofficial) must include all undergraduate and any graduate coursework, except coursework in progress.
Cover letters, resumes, and transcripts will assist in matching applicants with projects as they become available. Selected candidates will be invited to interview with the project leader(s) and intern coordinator. If not previously submitted, an official transcript(s) must be presented during the interview.
  • Background investigations will be conducted on applicants prior to placement and will include, but are not limited to, a review of the following information:
  • Employment history
  • Law enforcement/criminal history
  • References
If positions are not currently available, an applicant’s resume, cover letter and transcript(s) will be held on file for one year from the date of submission.

Internship Contact:
To apply for the Forensic Science Services Internship, please submit your resume, cover letter and official or unofficial transcript(s) to the contact listed below:
Intern Coordinator
Orange County Sheriff-Coroner Department
Forensic Science Services Division
320 North Flower Street
Santa Ana, CA 92703
Phone: 714.834.4510
Fax: 714.834.4519
E-mail: Interns@fss.ocgov.com