COSTEP Opportunity

The U.S. Public Health Service Commissioned Corps offers three excellent opportunities for students to serve their country while completing or continuing their education. If you are interested in a public health career, we encourage you to apply to the Junior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (JRCOSTEP), Senior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (SRCOSTEP) or FDA/CDER Academic Collaboration Program. All three programs offer excellent benefits and are highly competitive. For more information and to apply, click here.

Junior Commissioned Officer Training

Are you looking for an opportunity to meet leaders in public health, gain valuable professional experience, and be paid for your work while you complete your health-related education? Consider the JRCOSTEP. JRCOSTEP training and extern positions are available to students who have completed at least 1 year of study in a master's or doctoral program or at least 2 years of study in a professionally accredited baccalaureate program in specific health disciplines and meet other program requirements. In recent years most JRCOSTEPs are in a variety of fields such as environmental health, pharmacy, engineering, nursing, and dentistry. JRCOSTEP participants work in the same exciting Federal agencies and programs as full Commissioned Corps officers do. Typical assignments in locations throughout the country vary from 31 up to 120 days during official school breaks. Most JRCOSTEP participants are hired for the summer months (i.e., June, July, August) but other opportunities may be available throughout the year. They are not obligated to serve in the Commissioned Corps after graduation, but may decide to serve an extended active-duty assignment after they complete their professional education.

Applicants for JRCOSTEP who currently are in the next-to-last year of their professional education also may apply for SRCOSTEP.

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Senior Commissioned Officer Student Training and Extern Program (SRCOSTEP)

Are you looking for financial assistance to complete your education for a public health career? Consider the SRCOSTEP. SRCOSTEP training and extern positions are available to individuals who are enrolled as full-time students in certain accredited programs with at least 8 months of educational training remaining in their final year. Applications should arrive no later than 12 months prior to graduation. Pharmacy students should consider sending their applications 15 months before graduation to facilitate maximum sponsorship. In recent years agencies have selected nurse, pharmacy, and physician assistant students. Applications are accepted from all Commissioned Corps eligible areas of study. In return for financial assistance, SRCOSTEP participants agree to work for the Commissioned Corps after graduation. The service obligation is equal to twice the time sponsored; that is, for 9 months of financial support, a SRCOSTEP participant commits to 18 months of employment with the division or organization that provided the support. Candidates that are interested in SRCOSTEP are encouraged to participate in JRCOSTEP.

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Thank you for your interest in United States Public Health Service Student Programs through which you can serve your country while also completing your education and earning valuable work experience.