USP offers several training and research opportunities especially for students and fellows interested in pursuing scientific and public health careers that are aligned with USP’s mission and goals.

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Spend Your Summer Improving Public Health!

The USP Generation Summer Internship Program offers students of scientific and business operational disciplines the fulfilling opportunity to spend 12 weeks at USP working on a defined project that expands and enhances USP's core strategic initiatives. Selected applicants will work onsite at USP’s US headquarters in Rockville, Maryland from May 26 through August 14, 2020.

Internship Fast Facts

  • Duration: 12 weeks, 37.5 hour work week (flexible work hours!)
  • Location: USP–U.S. USP is within walking distance of the Washington, D.C. metro system (Twinbrook station), making commuting convenient from most locations
  • Dates: May 26 through August 14, 2020
  • Compensation: Participants receive an hourly rate for each hour worked. Interns are responsible for travel, housing, and living expenses.
  • Application Deadline: Friday, Dec 6, 2019
  • Perks: USP “summer hours” schedule, interactive experiences with the USP Executive Team, mentor program, lunch with the CEO, Escape Room “teambuilding” trip, professional trainings, & much more
  • Contact: Meagan Dumsha, Talent Acquisition Specialist, at, for more information.

Eligibility and Requirements

Undergraduate juniors and graduate students majoring in chemistry, biology, biochemistry, pharmacy, bioengineering, chemical engineering, or a related field are eligible for scientific roles. You must have completed basic chemistry courses, including quantitative chemical analysis, for the scientific based internships. Other majors will be considered for business operational internships, such as marketing, finance, management, public health, or accounting.

Applicants must demonstrate self-motivation, independent work habits, excellent oral and written communication skills, computer competence, and an ability to apply education and experience to your work.

Application Procedures & Deadline

To Apply, please submit the following documents:

  • Resume or CV
  • Academic transcript(s)
  • Letter of recommendation from professor or professional mentor
  • Essay (no more than 300 words) describing your interest and aspirations in working for USP and making an impact to global public health
  • Please list the project(s) for which you would like to be considered in the body of your email

Applications and supporting materials must be e-mailed to: by close of business, Friday, Dec 6th, 2019.

Once all applications and supporting documentation are received by the deadline date Project Sponsors will review all submittals. If you are chosen for next steps in the process, you will be contacted by mid-December to schedule a phone screen with the Project Sponsor.

List of Projects (5)

Reference Standards Laboratory Dept.

The RSL (Reference Standard Laboratories) tests and evaluates Reference Standards before they are released to the market to be used as primary standards for evaluating the quality of medicines. RSL uses different types of analytical techniques such as IR, TLC, HPLC, GC, and others to evaluate the reference standards. RSL is looking for applicants with chemistry and/or biology backgrounds and a passion for quality. This is a great opportunity to be part of the Reference Standard programs which impacts 2 billion people around the globe.

The intern will go through the following training during the internship program:

  • Safety Training: the interns will receive safety training before starts to work in the lab.
  • Documentation: the interns will be trained on Good Documentation Practice (GDP) and Good Lab Practice (GLP) for each step of testing.
  • Techniques: the interns will receive intensive training for different analytical technique such as Karl Fisher, IR, TLC, HPLC and GC.

Central Laboratory Operations Dept.

The intern in the Central Laboratory Operations Validation/Metrology group will have a unique opportunity to experience hands-on instrumentation support for a diverse and complex array of chemical and biological/biotechnological equipment. This work requires direct interaction with complex systems for mechanical and electrical/electronic troubleshooting as well as chemical or biological analysis to confirm suitability for use.

The intern will learn about analytical instrumentation such as Karl Fischer titrators, FTIR, UV spectrophotometers, CHN as well as Liquid Chromatography (HPLC and UPLC Systems), Gas Chromatography (GC) and Thin Layer Chromatography (TLC).

Duties will include:

  • Learning hands-on work of how to perform these tests and troubleshoot these systems
  • Gaining a deep understanding of the underlying scientific principles within these analytical tests
  • Interacting with many professional scientists with deep knowledge and wide experiences
  • Learning about different regulations, good documentation and laboratory practices

Chemical Medicines Dept.

The intern will participate in comprehensive review of different styles and terminologies used in USP drug substance and drug product monographs for organic impurities within a family of monographs. The objective is to align the terminology with the publication of the revised chapter and new chapter on organic impurities. The data collected will be used by scientific liaisons to align consistent terminology for impurities across the family of monographs.

The intern will gather high level data on impurities from individual monographs and create a summary table for the individual family of monographs.

Duties will include:

  • Searching USP online publications and chemical structure files to prepare a summary table of impurities
  • Using online tools to determine impurities listed in other pharmacopeia and regulatory documents.

Excipients Dept.

The intern will identify Excipient USP-NF monograph titles for cases where two (or more) different monographs share the same identity. The intern will also identify orthogonal tests included in the monograph that can be added to the identification sections of each monograph that can provide better selectivity at the individual excipient monograph level.

In addition, the intern will identify gaps between Excipient USP-NF monograph titles and FDA’s excipient IID, associated CAS Registry Numbers, their corresponding permanent, unique, unambiguous identifiers (Unique Ingredient Identifier (UNII)) for inactive ingredients in US approved drug products.

Duties will include:

  • Reviewing of the current USP-NF excipient monograph list and its existing chemical information based on molecular structure and/or descriptive information associated with nomenclature to those appearing in GSRS, IID, and the USAN dictionary. Duties will include identifying discrepancies between FDA’s IID and the USP-NF monograph title and all related chemical names, molecular structure, associated CAS Registry Numbers, their corresponding permanent, unique, unambiguous identifiers (Unique Ingredient Identifier (UNII)) for inactive ingredients in US approved drug products.
  • Compiling a list and providing to the EXC NOM JSC for finalization and prioritization. The list will also be shared with the EXC MGH ECs and FDA.

* Although this is not a laboratory-based position, the applicant should have an interest in organic, physical and analytical chemistry and data management.

Dietary Supplements and Herbal Medicines Dept.

The intern will participate in the front end of monograph development covering nomenclature and admission activities. The intern will collect preliminary data on ingredients slated for dietary supplement (DS) monograph development to help determine monograph titles and whether admission evaluation to perform will be abbreviated or comprehensive. These activities precede Dietary Supplement monographs and in the case of admission evaluation, determines whether development can proceed.

Duties will include:

  • Searching the literature to identify data for pre-admission on GRAS status, NDI status, evaluation by EFSA, and other regulatory agencies etc. and presence in the CFR for spices, food additives, and standards of identity.
  • Using online tools to determine ingredient’s presence in other pharmacopeia and regulatory documents.
  • Reviewing databases such as DSLD, OWL etc. and search Google search for labels of dietary supplements to determine ingredient’s presence as a dietary supplement in the USA and other label information.