William F. Helms Internship Program

Interested in a career in agriculture, botany, plant pathology, entomology, or other biological sciences? The USDA Pathways, William F. Helms Internship program provides university and college-level students with the opportunity to help protect U.S. agriculture and the environment while facilitating global trade of pest and disease-free agricultural goods. Students may experience hands-on activities like inspecting plants, plant products and other regulated items for pests or disease; conducting crop and commodity surveys; assisting with the identification of suspected pests and diseases; or participating in plant health emergency response efforts.  



  • Be a US citizen;
  • Be enrolled or accepted for enrollment in an accredited college or university;
  • Be a sophomore or junior in good academic standing with a minimum cumulative 2.5 GPA;
  • Be enrolled in programs related to agriculture or the biological sciences; and
  • Agree to work for the Agency during school breaks (both summer and holiday breaks) a minimum of 640 hours prior to completion of studies.

Application Deadline: Spring 2018

Year at Time of Application: 
Sophomore, Junior
Duration of Award: 
Full Year or More
No Preference, Research
Direct Submission
Area of Interest: 
Agricultural Sciences
Earliest Application Deadline: 
Jan. – April
Penn-State Sponsored: 
Fellowship Components: