Sandia National Laboratories Intern - Carlsbad Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) Technical Undergrad Year Round in Albuquerque, New Mexico


We are seeking an Intern Year Round - Technical Undergrad

On any given day, you may be called on to:

  • Assist with computational modeling as it applies to WIPP performance assessment, as well as the run control tools and database platforms used in various process model calculations
  • Utilize expertise in various computer science aspects of WIPP performance assessment, particularly scripting, database management, code coupling, and programming.
  • Communicate approaches and results to explain options, insights, and trade-offs to Carlsbad Sandia staff


You bring the confidence and skills to be eligible for the job by meeting these minimum requirements:

  • Currently attending and enrolled full time in an accredited undergraduate program
  • Minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0/4.0
  • Ability to work up to 25 hours per week during the academic year, and up to 40 hours per week during the summer
  • U.S. citizenship

Additional Requirements:

  • At least two years of continued education in a university Computer Science program with demonstrated academic excellence


  • Programming proficiency in C, Git, Matlab, and Java with a desire to extend coding expertise to Python
  • Ability to function effectively independently, but also the ability to communicate and collaborate within an interdisciplinary research team

Department Description:

Sandia National Laboratories is the Scientific Advisor to the Department of Energy's Carlsbad Field Office. The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) Performance Assessment and Decision Analysis Department is responsible for performing probabilistic system assessments and related uncertainty/sensitivity analyses for implementing WIPP recertification and/or modification strategies. The Land Withdrawal Act requires that the WIPP be recertified within at least five years following the first receipt of waste and every five years thereafter for the operational phase of the repository. Recertification applications and any interim modifications to the previously certified baseline must satisfy all regulatory requirements. Department 8881 is responsible for designing and managing the performance assessment for each recertification and interim modification to the WIPP certified baseline. Department 8881 in Sandia's Carlsbad Office has the lead role in designing, carrying out, analyzing the results of, documenting, and defending (1) the recertification calculations to demonstrate continued compliance with EPA's regulations, (2) the calculations to prepare applications to EPA for modifications to the present certified baseline for WIPP, and (3) the decision analyses for selecting cost-effective modifications or strategies.

Department 8881 also has an ongoing effort to modernize the current performance assessment suite of computing codes to one that captures a three-dimensional representation of the WIPP. This modernization effort is centered around PFLOTRAN, a three-dimensional two-phase flow and transport code written in object-oriented FORTRAN. It is envisioned that WIPP performance assessment will require a three-dimensional repository representation in the future, and that use of PFLOTRAN is the path forward for future WIPP compliance analyses. The PFLOTRAN upgrade requires updates to flow and transport process models currently used in WIPP performance assessment, software development, run control scripting of the overall upgraded computational suite, and validation testing. Prior to being fielded for an official WIPP compliance calculation, the updated performance assessment suite will undergo peer review by an external panel of experts.

About Sandia:

Sandia National Laboratories is the nation’s premier science and engineering lab for national security and technology innovation, with teams of specialists focused on cutting-edge work in a broad array of areas. Some of the main reasons we love our jobs:

  • Challenging work withamazingimpact that contributes to security, peace, and freedom worldwide
  • Extraordinary co-workers
  • Some of the best tools, equipment, and research facilities in the world
  • Career advancement and enrichment opportunities
  • Flexible schedules, generous vacations,strongmedical and other benefits, competitive 401k, learning opportunities, relocation assistance and amenities aimed at creating a solid work/life balance*

World-changing technologies. Life-changing careers. Learn more about Sandia at:

*These benefits vary by job classification.

Security Clearance:

This position does not currently require a Department of Energy (DOE)-granted security clearance.

Sandia will conduct a pre-employment drug testing, and a pre-employment background review that includes personal reference checks, law enforcement record checks, and employment and education verifications. Further, employees in New Mexico must pass a U.S. Air Force background screen for access to the work site. Substance abuse or illegal drug use, falsification of information, criminal activity, serious misconduct or other indicators of untrustworthiness can cause access to be denied or terminated, rendering the inability to perform the duties assigned and resulting in termination of employment.

If hired without a clearance, and one subsequently becomes required or you bid on positions that require a DOE-granted security clearance, a pre-processing background review that includes personal reference checks, law enforcement record and credit checks, and employment and education verifications may be conducted prior to a required federal background investigation. Applicants for DOE-granted security clearances must be U.S. citizens and be able to obtain and maintain the appropriate DOE security clearance as required for the position.

EEO Statement:

Equal opportunity employer/Disability/Vet/GLBT