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Water Engineering Intern-Public Services

Description/Distinguishing Features


The City of Kalamazoo Water Resources Division is comprised of professional engineers and technicians who design, inspect, and maintain infrastructure in the city. Staff focus on building and maintaining safe, efficient, and long-lasting infrastructure in Kalamazoo. The Division is responsible for water system improvements and maintenance. 

The Division operates and maintains the largest public groundwater drinking water system in the State of Michigan.   The system includes over 838 miles of public water main, 13 treatment plants, 94 wells, 10 water storage facilities, and approximately 7000 fire hydrants in 11 jurisdictions in Kalamazoo County.  


City of Kalamazoo Water Resources internships are available to currently enrolled students who are, at a minimum, entering their third year (junior year) of studies in a higher education program in the Civil, Environmental, Traffic, Transportation, or Construction Engineering field. Recently graduated students (within 1 year) or graduate students will also be accepted. Interns can obtain real world experience, valuable knowledge, and gain an introduction to the municipal engineering career field. The exposure to construction management, technical plan interpretation, construction budgets and accounting, inspection, public and contractor relations, and municipal government provides valuable understanding for future engineers in both the public or private sectors who work with local government to maintain and improve infrastructure.


Examples of Duties


Interns will learn and perform the following essential functions, and others, as determined by projects underway during their internship period.

  • Assist project engineers and managers with project designs.
  • Cross reference, verify, and update record data.
  • Generate and complete work orders and reports.
  • Inspect project construction, which may include but is not limited to:
    • Recording of quantities.
    • Monitoring progress of construction schedules.
    • Inspecting work to ensure it is done in accordance with specifications and bid documents.
    • Testing and Sampling
  • Interact with contractors, consultants, and the public to answer questions and provide information on projects.
  • Review drawings and specifications for accuracy and completion.
  • Research and develop strategies for future year projects.
  • Gather quantities for project development and bid packages.
  • Use computer programs, and specialized software including the Microsoft suite of programs; enter data, create, and update databases, create drawings, and spreadsheets.
  • Participate in developing and revisioning manuals, policies, and procedures.
  • Perform related duties as required.


Essential Qualifications


  • Have and exhibit excellent communication and people skills as applied to interaction with coworkers, supervisor, and the public.
  • Have a thorough understanding and experience with Microsoft OS and Microsoft Applications including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.
  • Have strong background and experience in time management, problem solving, written and verbal communication.
  • Must be detail oriented.
  • General organizational skills.   

Desired Skills

The following skills are highly desirable in Intern candidates:

  • Computer-aided design skills in AutoCAD, Civil 3D, or equivalent is a plus, as is knowledge of Microsoft Project or Primavera P6.
  • GIS (geographic information system) experience and knowledge.
  • Hydraulics, Water Resources, or Environmental related studies or experience.
  • Studies related to civil engineering materials, construction materials, or design


Acceptable Training and Experience


Interns will have the opportunity to engage in professional development opportunities including but not limited to: (some development opportunities may be limited due to offering institutions’ schedules)

  • Opportunity to obtain possible certifications and attend seminars.
  • Developing professional skills including formal communication, invitation-for-bid package creation, project estimation, and verbal and oral communication with contractors and the public.
  • Learning construction inspection skills and construction means and methods.
  • Developing skills in technical plan interpretation and review.
  • Experiencing using federal, state, and local design guidance, manuals, and requirements to develop projects, inspect construction, and design infrastructure for the municipality.
  • Attending professional association meetings.
  • Introduction to municipal civil engineering fields to include water, wastewater, street, and stormwater work.

The City of Kalamazoo is an Equal Opportunity Employer.  We are committed to creating a diverse, equitable and inclusive organization where different perspectives and experiences are welcomed and encouraged.  Studies have shown that women and people of color, are less likely to apply for jobs unless they meet all of the qualifications listed. The City of Kalamazoo is most interested in finding the best candidate for the job, and that candidate may be one from a less traditional background. If you have transferable experience, please tell us about it. This approach will give each current and potential employee the opportunity to learn, grow and contribute to the City of Kalamazoo.