ISEC Opportunities

The Illinois Student Environmental Coalition is proud to offer a variety of opportunities, both educational and occupational, to its members. From field trips to careers, we strive to provide excellent resources in hopes to aid students in their pursuit of sustainability.


Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA)

Organized in 1997, MEEA is a collaborative network advancing energy efficiency in the Midwest for sustainable economic development and environmental stewardship. Visit their website or check out their job listings

National Resources Defense Council (NRDC)

The NRDC is the nation’s most effective environmental action group, combining the grassroots power of more than 2 million members and online activists with the courtroom clout and expertise of nearly 500 lawyers, scientists, and other professionals. NRDC was founded in 1970 to protect our air, land, and water from the forces of pollution and corporate greed. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Forest Preserve District- DuPage County

The forest preserve district of DuPage County is a nationally recognized conservation agency that envisions a community in which all citizens share a connection with nature and an appreciation for cultural history. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Shedd Aquarium

The Shedd Aquarium is located in Chicago, IL and combines traditional aquarium techniques with 21st century advances to better understand and promote aquatic animal care, environments, and interpretation. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Environment Illinois

Environment Illinois is a statewide, citizen-based environmental advocacy organization that researches the challenges confronting Illinois’s environment and educates the public about what’s at stake. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Environmental Law and Policy Center (ELPC)

The ELPC is the Midwest’s leading public interest environmental legal advocacy and eco-business innovation organization, and among the nations leaders. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Illinois Chapter of the Sierra Club

The Sierra Club is the nation’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization. Visit their website or check out their job listings


Impact is a nonprofit organization that hires and trains organizers to run action campaigns. They work in states where they can win positive change for our environment, our democracy, and our future. Currently Impact is looking for full-time campaign organizers to start immediately and August of 2016. Visit their website or check out their job listing

Work for Progress

Work for Progress is a nonprofit dedicated to strengthening organizations across the country that work for social change by meeting their staffing needs. Work for Progress a member of The Public Interest Network, along with Environment America and Impact. Visit their website or check out their job listing


Red Gate Farm

Have you ever dreamed of getting hands-on experience on a real, working, permaculture farm?  Do you love working outdoors? Are you open to learning new paradigms in farming and new ideas that are “outside the box?”  If you answered “Yes” to these questions, consider applying for Red Gate Farm’s labor-for-learning exchange, or our internship program. Visit their website or check out their job listing

Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT)

The CNT is a nonprofit leader in promoting more livable and sustainable communities through advanced technology. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Chicago Zoological Society (CZS)

The CZS is a collection of the Center for Conservation Leadership and the Center for the Science of Animal Welfare that embraces learning and research, integrating a wide variety of discipline, to change the way animal conservation issues are considered and advancing the science of “animal-directed” care around the world. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Illinois Stewardship Alliance

The Illinois Stewardship Alliance is looking for individuals interested in gaining experience with local food systems, sustainable farming, land stewardship, soil and water conservation, graphic design, website design and marketing. These opportunities are unpaid but offer valuable experience, projects for your portfolio, and networking opportunities. Visit their website and email if you are interested or would like more information.

United States Green Building Council (USBGC)

The USGBC and its community are dedicated to changing the way buildings and communities are designed, built, and operated. Visit their website or check out their job listings

The Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition

The Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition is a registered charitable organization dedicated to protecting the environment and conserving natural resources by helping the Chicago foodservice industry reduce its collective environmental footprint. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Foresight Design Initiative

Foresight Design Initiative is a multidisciplinary innovation studio that works with diverse partners to understand sustainability challenges and identify holistic, resilient solutions. Their mission is to develop, provide, and teach leading edge multidisciplinary approaches to tackle complex sustainability challenges. Visit their website or check out their job listings


Greenpeace is the leading independent campaigning organization that uses peaceful protest and creative communication to expose global environmental problems and to promote solutions that are essential to a sustainable future. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Chicago Botanic Garden

The Chicago Botanic Garden is a 385 acre “living museum campus” dedicated to understanding, valuing, and protecting natural habitats to sustain our world. They believe people live better, healthier lives when they can create, care for, and and enjoy natural environments that are fundamentally important to the mental and physical well-being of all people. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Collegiate Leaders in Environmental Health

Collegiate Leaders in Environmental Health is a group dedicated to studying the multiple connections between the environment and public health. Visit their website or check out their job listings

Governor’s Environmental Corps

These internships are sponsored through the Illinois EPA and focus on conducting work guided toward sustainability. Visit their website or check out their job listings

The Illinois Environmental Council was started in 1975 as a nonprofit environmental organization that promotes sound environmental laws and policies, provides a forum for environmentalists, and facilitates a statewide activist network.

IEC performs legislative advocacy and serves as the environmental community’s eyes, ears and voice in Springfield. IEC has offices in Chicago and Springfield. Internships are available in both locations. Please see for more information on the organization.

IEC is seeking an intern that will gain hands-on experience through various communications and policy activities, which include:

  • Research and tracking environmental legislation
  • Writing information for the public about environmental issues including website content, newsletter items, and other materials
  • Assisting staff on coordination of IEC’s special events including lobby day
  • Assisting with social media (i.e. Twitter, Facebook and YouTube)
  • Performing other tasks as requested


  • Interest in environmental issues and policies
  • Strong research skills
  • Excellent communication and writing skills
  • Completed at least 2 years of undergraduate, graduate students are encouraged to apply
  • Computer skills, including proficiency in Microsoft Word and Excel

Internships are generally unpaid, require a minimum of 10 hours per week, and last 4 months. Students seeking academic credit are welcomed.

To apply for Chicago or Springfield offices send brief cover letter and resume to:

Matt Steffen, Deputy Director
msteffen at ilenviro dot org

Therkildsen Field Station Field Trip
When: Whenever!

Hosted by University of Illinois- Springfield.

Summary: Whether you are an experienced researcher needing logistical support or simply interested in learning more about the Emiquon Preserve and the TFSE, we want to help you out. This is a great opportunity for student groups or classes to experience The Nature Conservancy’s Emiquon Preserve!

Interested? Learn more HERE

Old Capitol Farmers Markets in Springfield
When: Every Saturday and once a month on Wednesdays until October 28th.

Hosted by the Illinois Stewardship Alliance.

Summary: We need your help at the Old Capitol Farmers Market! Volunteering with us is a great way to support your community; meet new friends; learn more about local farms, chefs, bakers, and other vendors; and get a behind-the-scenes look at the people and faces that help make our farmers market the place to be every Saturday morning. The Old Capitol Farmers Market is all about building a thriving local community and creating a sense of place here in Springfield. We can’t do it without you!

Interested? Learn more HERE.

Calumet Stewardship Initiative
Regular Restoration Day & Other Events

When: Multiple dates

Hosted by Calumet Stewardship Initiative

Summary: Help restore one of a variety of woods, nature preserves, or areas through a variety of sustainable behavior.

Interested? Learn more HERE

Illinois Audubon Society Field Trips
When: Multiple Dates

Hosted by: Illinois Audubon Society

Summary: The Illinois Audubon Society hosts a variety of organized field trip events covering a handful of issues regarding birds and wildlife. Every trip is unique and events fills up fast, so be sure to register ahead of time.

Interested? Learn more HERE

Brookfield Zoo Field Trips
When: Whenever!

Hosted by Brookfield Zoo

Summary: Visit the Brookfield Zoo to learn about animals, ecosystems, and biospheres all over the world. The Bookfield Zoo, along the the Chicago Zoological Society, work hard to educate the public on the impact our behaviors have on our surrounding environment and the important of sustainability on the natural world.

Interested? Learn more HERE

Nature on Tap
When: Last Tuesday of the Month

6:00 p.m.- 9:30 p.m.

Hosted by: The Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum

Summary: Nature on Tap features adults-only access to the Nature Museum, including the Judy Istock Butterfly Haven. Check out each month’s featured theme, and play trivia for a chance to win unique prizes!

Interested? Learn more HERE

Partners for Parks and Wildlife

Partners for Parks and Wildlife (PPW) is a grassroots coalition that is dedicated to secure and increase funding for open space and park acquisition, natural area preservation, wildlife habitat protection and recreational opportunities in Illinois.

Learn More About Climate Change

The U.S. EPA’s website on climate change was once a great resource for basic scientific information on the topic and we look forward to the day that it is again. Until then, the City of Chicago is making sure its citizens have access to research and information.


One of the simplest ways to donate to the IEC is by contributing through EarthShare in your workplace charity campaign .