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Preference in filling vacancies is given to qualified Indian candidates in accordance with the Indian Reorganization Act of 1934 (Title 25, USC, Section 472). Verification Form BIA-4432 must be submitted with the application if claiming Indian Preference. Indian Preference eligibles not currently employed in Federal service may be appointed under the Excepted Service Appointment Authority Schedule A, 213.3112(a)(7).

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How to Apply

We are continuously recruiting to fill internships. The duty stations for the positions are located nationwide. We post ALL job opportunities for Pathways Internships on USAJOBS.

How to guide How to Apply for a Pathways Internship | Indian Affairs (

A helpful link for all government internships

We also post the latest Pathways job announcement on our main page.

If you are unable to apply online, require reasonable accommodation in the application process if you are an applicant with a disability, or need to fax a document you do not have in electronic form, view the following link for information regarding an Alternate Application.

Program Benefits

  • Paid internships while continuing education,
  • Internships with the BIA, Tribes, or a Tribal related programs,
  • No prior experience required,
  • Holiday and sick pay, flexible schedules, etc.,
  • Summer assignments within different programs and work environments with industry professionals, and
  • Potential for non-competitive placement after graduation into a permanent professional entry level BIA or tribal position.

Eligibility Requirements

In addition to the below requirements, participants must also be able to complete 640 hours of Pathways work experience before graduation or completing higher education.

  • 18 years of age,
  • Must be registered for Selective Service, if applicable (,
  • Eligible for Indian Preference by using Form BIA 4432,
  • Be accepted or enrolled in an accredited college, university, or technical school (Tribal College and University students are highly encouraged to apply!),
  • Maintain part-time or full-time student status as defined by your educational institution,
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher, and
  • Seeking a bachelor's degree related to program/position.
  • Compliance with the terms and conditions of the Pathways Internship Program,
  • Adhering to all requirements of federal employment and the Pathways Internship Program.

Some positions require:

  • Ability to obtain and maintain a security clearance
  • Medical Exam, Drug Testing
  • Driver's License

Targeted Degree Programs

Degree program areas include natural resources management, geography, agricultural engineering, agricultural economics, animal husbandry, animal science, horticulture, rangeland management, soil conservation or science, environmental sciences, fisheries and wildlife biology, forestry and other related biological sciences.

Some of the positions we target for full-time professional entry level positions include the following job titles:

Other Degree Programs

We understand that some students are undecided or enrolled in an unrelated degree program area and are thinking about changing.

To widen the pathways for careers pertaining to the Stewardship of Trust assets and tribal resources, we hire students on a contingent basis and place them on a work assignment in an area unrelated to their degree program. This gives them the opportunity to experience a program area before making up their minds for a career choice, and at the same time allows the BIA to attract and retain students who possess significant untapped potential.

However, their continued employment is contingent upon meeting the educational degree program eligibility requirements listed below within a prescribed timeframe.

A Career Commitment

We encourage all interested students to apply with the awareness potential work locations could be remote and may lack modern comforts. Pathways will do everything in its power to accommodate your preferences, but participation may require leaving your comfort zone.

Completing the program will create an opportunity for conversion into a permanent position.

Conversion Opportunity

The ultimate goal and purpose of Pathways is to transition you from your temporary working assignments to full-time, permanent employment within the Bureau of Indian Affairs upon your graduation. Not all cases work out where your previous host locations will have a job opening for you, but that is the ideal scenario for Pathways.

To be eligible for non-competitive conversion into a full-time position within the BIA, participants must:

  • Complete at least 640 hours of work experience in Pathways,
  • Complete their degree or certificate requirements,
  • Meet the OPM qualification standards for the position to which the intern will be converted,
  • Meet agency-specific requirements as specified in the Participant's Agreement,
  • Receive a “Fully Successful” or above Performance Rating,
  • Receive favorable evaluation and recommendation from host supervisor for non-competitive conversion “appointment”,
  • Accept job placement offer and relocate if necessary, and
  • Some job titles have specific position requirements in addition to the bachelor's degree requirement or require a medical exam, drug testing, and a driver license.

Work Assignment

Every year you must complete a new work assignment agreement (WAA) in order to intern with the BIA. This will be filled out by you, your host supervisor, and Pathways personnel. 

Student Intern Work Assignment To Do List (Before, During and Closeout) Overview Checklist PDF (NEW)

It may be possible to work with your host BIA office year-round or outside the summer block. If interested, bring it up with your host supervisor and the Pathways coordinators. 

The biggest factor would be the proximity of your university and your host location. There could be special circumstances like virtual work or virtual schooling, so be sure it's a viable option for all parties.


Contact Us

BIA Pathways
301 NW 6th Ste 311
Oklahoma City, OK 73102
Open 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. CST, Monday–Friday.