Coroner’s Division Intern (Unpaid Intern)

US Government, Sheriff/Coroner

Coroner’s Division Intern (Unpaid Intern)
Orange County Sheriff’s Department
 This recruitment is Open to the Public and
will close on Sunday, February 5, 2023 at 11:59 P.M. PST
The Orange County Sheriff’s Department is a modern, progressive law enforcement agency dedicated to protecting the peace and enhancing the quality of life for everyone in the County of Orange. The OC Coroner Division carries out the statutory duties of the Coroner and serves the citizens and visitors of Orange County by conducting thorough medicolegal death investigations with compassion and specialized expertise.
Duties may vary, depending upon current project needs of the division and the intern’s assigned section. Examples of duties include investigative assistance, both in the office and at times in the field that involve speaking with families of decedents, medical and law enforcement personnel and mortuary staff; observation and support of forensic assistants during autopsies and in processing remains and evidence; and records/administration tasks related to specialized projects pertaining to media inquiries, data collection and processing, and records.

Assignments may provide experience related to the following activities:

  • Assist at death scene investigations under the direct supervision of a Deputy Coroner
  • Observe and provide support during autopsies under the direct supervision of a Forensic Pathologist or Forensic Assistant
  • Assist with data collection and/or analysis
  • Screen incoming calls to determine what information falls within the Coroner’s jurisdiction
  • Review records to identify details relevant to a death investigation
  • Process evidence on non-criminal cases

Those applying for an internship with the Coroner Division are expected to have completed their third year at an accredited college or university prior to the start date of the internship and must be pursuing or have completed a bachelor’s degree in forensic science, biology, chemistry, anthropology, criminal justice or a closely related field. Completion of an associate degree in mortuary science is acceptable.  

Minimum GPA of 2.8 is required. (Be sure your GPA is highlighted on your unofficial transcripts)

Applicants must be familiar with basic death investigation principles and/or physiology/anatomy; must be comfortable while interacting with the public both in person and via phone; and must have demonstrated experience in customer service.  Specific skill requirements will vary depending upon available projects and assigned section.  Basic computer skills are required. Applicants must be able to work independently on projects as assigned.

Internships are offered year round and require 8 or more hours per week (up to 20 hours per week) for 3 months, with the possibility to extend up to 6 months, at the discretion of the division . Schedules may vary, depending on specific tasks and intern availability. Hours may be scheduled 7 days a week, between 6 a.m. – midnight, depending on the assigned section.

Although this is an unpaid internship that does not lead to permanent employment or include employee benefits, the position offers participants an excellent experience in working within a large county coroner’s office. It also provides an opportunity for interns to explore career options, gain knowledge and skills that complement their academic studies, build resumes and network with professionals in the medicolegal death investigation environment.

Candidates will need to upload a resume, cover letter, and unofficial transcripts to be considered.  Selected candidates will be interviewed by the project(s) leader and intern coordinator in February.

  • The cover letter or letter of interest is an opportunity for applicants to describe career and academic goals and to elaborate upon personal interests/accomplishments related to the internship. Learn more about what to include in a cover letter HERE
  • The resume must include relevant education, work experiences and community involvement
  • The unofficial transcript(s) must include all undergraduate and any graduate coursework, except coursework in progress. Your current GPA needs to be highlighted on your transcripts

Once an application is made, the selection process includes a review of application materials, an interview and a thorough background investigation.  Applicants who have been selected for an interview will be contacted in February to schedule that interview.

Background investigations that can take three – five months to process will be conducted on applicants who have successfully interviewed for the internship and wish to pursue placement.

The background investigation includes a 20 – 30-minute pre-screen interview. The pre-screen interview for out-of-state applicants can be conducted by phone. An additional three-hour in-person interview and Livescan fingerprinting are also required.
The following documents will be completed by qualified applicants during the background investigation:

  • Civilian Personal History form, includes employment history & arrest record
  • Notarized Authorization to Release Information form
As part of the background investigation, applicants will be required to provide five references along with original copies of the following documents (NOTE: Do NOT attach these documents to your application):
  • Birth certificate (original or certified copy) or if applicable, naturalization certificate/resident card (Passport is not accepted.)
  • Valid, state-issued driver’s license or ID
  • Social Security card
  • Proof of current automobile liability insurance coverage, listing applicant as an insured driver
  • Official college transcript(s) (Required for applicants who have completed their degree(s) and must be submitted in a sealed/unopened envelope.)
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