In late May, the Lab’s workforce grew by another 2000 or so, when a likely record number of students came to Los Alamos. The Lab offers internship opportunities for everybody from high schoolers to post-master’s students. Jobs span nearly every department: from particle physics and machining to communications and finance. “It’s a great chance to try out a job before having to commit to more education first, particularly for the younger students,” says Nicole Holtzclaw-Stone, the program manager at the Student Programs Office. If you’re interested in joining the Lab’s workforce as a student or would like to take on a student as a mentor, here’s what you need to know.
Pay starts at $15.25/hour for high school students and goes up from there. This year saw a 4% raise for all students, with additional pay increases at each level of education advancement. For example, third-year bachelor’s students are paid higher than second-year bachelor’s students.
Different programs have different minimum GPAs for applicants, but it must be higher than 3.0. Some work is only available to those 18 or older. Students must be 16 to apply.
A Focus on Diversity
The Department of Energy–funded Office of Workforce Development for Teachers and Scientists recruits bachelor’s students at community colleges and universities, placing emphasis on diversifying the workforce.
Certain programs at the Laboratory offer tuition reimbursement for Los Alamos employees who opt to further their careers by returning to school.
The Student Programs Office offers six in-depth classes on the best practices of mentoring. New-mentor training is available online.
One third of Laboratory staff began their careers at the Lab as a student or post-doc. For R&D that number goes up to an astonishing 60%.
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