Integrating Sustainability Across the Curriculum

Position Details

Organization: Penn Sustainability Office Location: Philadelphia
Type: Internship Timeframe: Summer Level: Graduate, Undergraduate Start/End Dates:
June 1, 2020 to July 27, 2020
Internship Link
Application Link Contact Information: Natalie

About Integrating Sustainability Across the Curriculum (ISAC)

Integrating Sustainability Across the Curriculum (ISAC) Program was established to help Penn faculty introduce environmental sustainability into existing and new courses. The Penn Sustainability Office provides full funding support for graduate or undergraduate summer research assistants, who work directly with faculty to update or create new syllabi, lectures, assignments, texts, and/or tests that incorporate environmental themes.  Each student works 20 hours a week with two different professors, starting in June, to allow the student to benefit from exposure to two different faculty members working on two different courses.

Information for Students

Students who are accepted into the ISAC Program will serve as Research Fellows for eight weeks over the summer. Each student will be teamed with two faculty members and will help to integrate sustainability into their courses. This work may involve researching material for the courses, developing new assignments, contributing to lectures, and compiling course reading lists. The selected students will participate in an initial meeting with the Sustainability Office to outline goals for the summer fellowship. Each student will also provide periodic progress updates to the Sustainability Office.  After working with faculty members for the course of the summer, students present their completed research at a wrap-up lunch in the early fall. 

Over the past eight summers, the ISAC program has brought in numerous students to work with 74 faculty in a diverse array of disciplines, including architecture, law, biology, engineering, urban planning, and Germanic languages. Faculty participants have reported an extremely high quality work and have been delighted by their students’ productivity and enthusiasm for the work. 

Joining the Program for Students

ISAC Fellows are Expected to:

  • Work closely with the faculty members to whom they are assigned on the development of their courses;
  • Attend two update meetings with Penn Sustainability Staff over the project duration;
  • Actively participate in four sustainability-themed field trips with other student research interns;
  • Present their course development in a poster session at the end of the summer.

The ISAC Fellowship is considered equivalent to a full-time job (35-40 hours a week).  The internship is eight weeks long beginning Monday, June 1st.

Application Instructions

Penn Sustainability is now accepting applications for ISAC student research internships. Interested applicants should review the application requirements located here and submit the required information to the Sustainability Office, Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis throughout March, and students are encouraged to submit their applications early. Please reach out to Natalie Walker ( with any questions.