Medical Examiner
Internship Program

PDF Icon Medical Examiner Internship Application 

General Information

The Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner (ACOME) is an independent resource that serves the citizens of Allegheny County.  Our staff supports our obligation to investigate sudden, unnatural and violent deaths with compassion for families and friends during their time of grief.  Our office applies current scientific methods for evidence analysis and investigations to effectively assist law enforcement, judicial court systems and health and environmental agencies. 

The Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner has two main operational areas: Morgue Operations, which includes Death Investigations, Autopsy, Histology and Pathology, and Laboratory Operations, which includes Evidence Receiving, Forensic Biology, Drug Chemistry, Toxicology, Environmental Chemistry, Firearms/Toolmarks, Trace Evidence, Latent Prints, Crime Scene Processing and a Mobile Forensic Laboratory. The ACOME Forensic Laboratory Division is an ASCLD/LAB ISO 17025 accredited facility in all disciplines.   In all of these facilities a high level of professional practice is maintained.  In addition to the service these divisions provide to the local community, they also offer a potential source of invaluable exposure to and training in the various forensic and medical fields.  This twelve week internship program provides an opportunity to explore various facets of the Medical Examiner’s Office. 

Internship Positions

  • Morgue Operations Internship
  • Forensic Laboratory Division Internship

Internship Summary

General Requirements:

  • Must be covered by College or University’s liability insurance and provide documentation of coverage upon award of internship or be covered by independent liability insurance and provide documentation of coverage
  • Must be enrolled or have completed a degree program in a major relevant to the research  being performed
  • Must be able to commit two to three days per week (Tuesday through Friday) with a minimum of 5 hours per day between the hours of 8 am – 4 pm.
  • Background check and drug screen may be required before official award of the internship
  • A minimum of 120 hours must be completed for successful completion of the internship. If additional hours are specified by the University/College, this must be noted on the application.
  • Internship applicant must designate which internship Track is desired (outlined below)
    • Preference will be given to Track One applicants.
  • Intern must complete a series of lectures provided by staff of the ACOME on a variety of Medicolegal and Forensic topics. 
  • Intern must complete a didactic rotation through the operational areas of the office
  • Intern must present research accomplished throughout the internship program in one of the following formats:
    • PowerPoint presentation given to the assigned section and pertinent management
  • Additional areas of presentation in the following formats will be encouraged, but may exceed the timeline of the internship:
    • A poster at a local or national conference
    • Submission of a proposed journal article to an applicable scientific journal
Track One (1):

Internships provided for students already conducting independent research through their College or University or submit a viable research proposal

  • The intern must submit an abstract and outline their research project/proposal at the time of application
  • The research will be conducted in conjunction with didactic rotations in all sections of the ME’s office
  • A mentor will be assigned for this intern based on the recommendation of the manager and the experience of members of the pertinent sections

Track Two (2):

Internships provided for students interested in conducting research for ACOME

  • The research will be conducted in conjunction with didactic rotations in all sections of the ME’s office
  • The intern must specify areas of interest for research opportunities.

Application Deadline and Notification

The Internship Application must be submitted by the due date for the term applying.  Applicants will be notified no later than the dates listed below if awarded an internship position. Due to the volume of applications received ONLY individuals that are awarded an internship will be contacted by letter or e-mail if one is provided in the application. Notification of scholarship award will occur in concurrence with internship award/appointment.

Internship Term 

Application Deadline 



September 15

October 25


January 15

February 25


May 15

June 25

Selection Criteria:

  • All applicant materials must be submitted by the established deadlines.  
  • After review of the submitted application materials a selection of the internship applicants will be contacted for an interview process. 
  • Upon offer and acceptance of the internship opportunity, a $500 internship fee will be due within two weeks of acceptance.  Payment may be made via check payable the “County of Allegheny” and directed to Attention:

Robert Huston – Internship/Research Program
c/o Allegheny County office of the Medical Examiner
1520 Penn Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15222

Scholarship Opportunity:

Students applying for the Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner Research Program Scholarship available through the Allegheny County Office of the Medical Examiner should be in their junior/senior year of undergraduate or working toward a graduate degree in a biology-related, chemistry-related, physics-related or forensic science-related program, wanting to pursue a career in Forensics. Applicants need to be in good academic standing, have two letters of recommendation from academic instructors, one of which must be from an instructor in their field of study, and write a 250 to 500 word letter outlining their goals on the application of their research to forensic science community. Documentation for scholarship consideration should be submitted at the same time as the research program applications.  References for general application maybe used to satisfy the scholarship application if the scholarship specific criterion is met.