University of Wisconsin–Madison
Area Health Education Centers
Area Health Education Centers

Community Health Internship Program (CHIP)

Summer Opportunities for Internships in Public Health Departments

AHEC summer intern programs provide hands-on learning opportunities for students and assistance to local health departments.

  • Program Overview

    Programs in each AHEC region across the state are somewhat different, but each has at its core a partnership with local health departments to develop research projects and provide mentoring for health professions students interested in an intensive summer experience in community health. The placement is 8 weeks during June and July.

  • Eligibility

    In addition to having an interest in community health / public health, candidates must be Wisconsin residents or attending a college / university in Wisconsin, GPA of 3.0 or higher, and a be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

  • MILWAUKEE Placements

    The Milwaukee Community Health Internship Program (known as “Milwaukee CHIP”) started in the summer of 2000 as a partnership between Milwaukee AHEC, the UW Medical School Clinical Campus at Sinai-Samaritan Medical Center, and city and county public health agencies in Milwaukee. Students are placed with mentors in local health departments, community service agencies, and community health centers. They work on projects that vary widely to suit interns’ interests and abilities and local needs. They participate in weekly seminars which provide them with an orientation to community & public health and an opportunity to share their progress. Students receive a modest stipend to help defray their living costs. Students will have an opportunity to present their projects at the conclusion of the internship. Applications for the Milwaukee program are available in December and due in February. Students interested in projects in Milwaukee, Waukesha, Racine, and Kenosha counties are encouraged to apply to the Milwaukee CHIP program. Read more about Milwaukee CHIP as described on the Wisconsin AHEC website.

  • STATEWIDE Placements

    Wisconsin AHEC’s statewide CHIP is for students who are interested in a community health internship placement in a variety of locations throughout the state. Wisconsin AHEC staff members work with numerous public health departments to develop suitable intern projects and identify mentors located in many counties. Statewide placement process: During the application process, students are invited to express a preference for matching with a particular location as well as a specific community health project that furthers their academic area of interest. Applications are available beginning in December and due in February. A list of potential projects is usually available by December. For many interns, their CHIP host health departments may be located near their home towns or within commuting distance of their college campuses. Please note that a local connection will make it easier to arrange summer housing; limited housing options may be available at CHIP placement sites. In addition to completing the local project in their host community, interns participate in a full-group orientation day on the University of Wisconsin–Madison campus to kick off the program. Throughout the summer, Wisconsin AHEC sponsors Web-based instruction on community health principles and practice; CHIP interns can participate remotely from their placement sites.

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Read more about CHIP:

Annual Reports:

2017 Presentations:
2017 CHIP interns created a short video to present their projects.

The projects can be found here.

2016 Presentations:
2016 CHIP interns had the option of creating a digital story to present their projects. A few are highlighted below.

Johanna Carlson
Sawyer County Health Department
Northwest Region
Adolescent Health Friendly Community

Michael Kozuch
Rusk County Health Department
Environmental Public Health

Tia Ramirez
Wisconsin Alliance for Women’s Health
South Central
Providers and Teens Communicating for Health (PATCH)

Erik Sanson
Wisconsin Department of Health Services
South Central
Tobacco Prevention

Tristin Christopher
Eau Claire City – County Health Department
North Central
The Ultimate Environment Health Experience2016 CHIP Intern Spotlights (PDF)

2015 Presentations:

2015 CHIP interns had the option of creating a digital story to present their projects. A few are highlighted below.

Andrea O’Bright
Calumet County Health Division
Northeastern region
Public Health Nurse Intern

Miguel Garcia
Public Health Madison and Dane County
South Central region
Inland Beach Monitoring

Andrea Brocker
Watertown Department of Public Health
South Central region
Practical Application of Environmental Health Theory

Lauren Bagley
Adams County Health and Human Service:
Public Health Division
South Central region
Advocating for a Healthier Adams County

2015 CHIP Intern Spotlights (PDF)

2014 Presentations:
Each CHIP intern presented highlights from her/his project in the form of a 10-minute PowerPoint slideshow or Prezi using the webinar technology Bluejeans.

Highlighted Past Projects

CHIP intern Meagan Lechner promotes breastfeeding friendly child care centers in Chippewa County

CHIP intern McKenzie Liegel helps improve local fruit and vegetable consumption among WIC participants in Juneau and Adams Counties

2014 CHIP Mentor Spotlights

2014 CHIP intern spotlights

CHIP intern Victoria Strutz: Public Health intern at the Langlade County Health Department

CHIP intern Nic Werbeckes works with The Family Center in Wisconsin Rapids

Aurora Adult Day Center Milwaukee CHIP 2011

Winnebago County 2012 alcohol policy change


CHIP statewide coordinator

2018 Program Dates:

June 4 – July 27

2018 CHIP Student Application


  • Statewide and Milwaukee CHIP: February 6, 2018

Application information and student application coming soon.

2018 Student Recruitment Flyer (PDF)

Host Site information

CHIP Host Site Details

Host Site Application