Climate Adaptation Intern Program

We train USU students to meaningfully engage with climate adaptation issues in Utah and the Intermountain West.


In January 2024, the Climate Adaptation Intern Program (CAIP) was created within USU Extension to meet Utah’s growing need for climate adaptation planning. In a semester-long cohort-style program, Dr. Scott Hotaling, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Watershed Sciences and USU’s Climate Resiliency Extension Specialist, and Dr. Kendall Becker, the CAIP Coordinator, train USU students from a variety of disciplines in climate adaptation planning to create fact sheets, decision tools, websites, and other resources specific to the unique needs of Utah and the surrounding region. We primarily work with undergraduates but welcome interested graduate students from any discipline.

The goal of the CAIP is to provide Utah’s leaders, state agencies, businesses, and residents with the resources and information they need to make intentional changes to ease the economic, social, health, and environmental burdens of climate change. Concurrent goals of the program are to train the next generation of climate adaptation experts in Utah, connect interns to Extension as a career, and evaluate the efficacy of a semester-long program that engages students with climate adaptation issues. 

CAIP students during a workshop session
How do I become a CAIP Intern?

CAIP interns are USU students hired from all fields of study. Interns receive hourly compensation to develop their research and communication skills during 12 weekly meetings and to spend an estimated 8 hours/week working on a project of their choice. 

Benefits to interns include training in climate change science and communication skills, stronger connections with USU faculty and staff, a published fact sheet or other deliverable, and involvement with a community of peers who are also motivated by climate change issues.

Job ads are posted on Aggie Handshake in July and November each year.If you would like to be notified about job postings or other relevant opportunities, please fill out this form.

CAIP studnets engaging in discussions
How do I propose a project topic?

Whenever possible, interns are connected with topic experts so that the fact sheet or other product they workshop during the program can be verified prior to publication. If you would like to serve as a mentor and/or have a project idea to propose, please fill out this form by July 1st (for fall semester) or by November 1st (for spring semester).

If you would like to fund an intern (~$2,000) to create a fact sheet or other deliverable as part of a broader impact for a specific grant, please contact Dr. Scott Hotaling ( and Dr. Kendall Becker (


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Dr. Scott Hotaling

Assistant Prof. of Watershed Sciences, Climate Resiliency Extension Specialist

Dr. Scott Hotaling

Office Location: BNR 361

Dr. Kendall Becker

Climate Adaptation Intern Program Coordinator