Interview with Erik Moseley: Salisbury University Student Completes Internship with Planning and Zoning


Category: Planning and Zoning Human Resources

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Salisbury University Student Erik Moseley (middle) stands with Planning and Zoning staff. Moseley just wrapped up a 135-hour internship with the County.

Salisbury University Student Erik Moseley (middle) stands with Planning and Zoning staff. Moseley just wrapped up a 135-hour internship with the County.

Erik Moseley, a second-year Salisbury University student majoring in Urban and Regional Planning, just completed a 135-hour internship with the Talbot County Department of Planning and Zoning.

As a participant in the internship program, Moseley worked closely with County employees to learn the basics of how planners operate on a daily basis, by joining staff for onsite inspections, building inspections, code enforcement visits, and environmental reviews. Moseley received the Gerald A. Elkins Internship Award, making the partnership between Salisbury University’s Urban and Regional Planning Program, the Salisbury University Foundation and the Talbot County’s Department of Planning and Zoning possible.

The Talbot County Office of Communications was able to speak with Moseley before he returns to college to continue his academic studies.

What inspired you to pursue an internship with Talbot County?

The Planning and Zoning Department works with a “living” Code; this internship gave me an opportunity to learn how planners operate after a code has been written and implemented, tying concepts I learn at school to more practical scenarios.

What tasks or projects did you handle during your internship?

I reviewed how the Department implements the County Code through the permitting process and learned how planners operate on a daily basis. I went to various site inspections, building inspections, code enforcement visits, and environmental reviews. I reviewed site plans for various types of construction proposals and gained an understanding of how permits help jurisdictions implement code on the government side.

What is one of the biggest challenges you faced in understanding planning and zoning’s role in county government?

Communicating permit requirements to members of the public can be challenging. It can be hard to explain to someone the ‘why’ of certain rules since the rules often pertain to the ‘big picture’. It’s the County’s job to be fair and impartial in their code enforcement and permitting process.

What was one of the best parts, or most interesting part, of your internship?

I was able to get out into the field with the other planners, inspectors, and code enforcement officers, and always gained a better understanding of the concepts learned at the office after seeing the concepts implemented in the field. This also allowed me to experience some of the beauty of Talbot County; being out by the water during Critical Area and property inspections made for some of the best and most interesting site visits. 

What are your long-term career goals within the field of planning and zoning?

I want to take my degree and apply it to emergency management planning. Using mapping systems and planning techniques to analyze things like emergency response times or other resources vital for emergency management is interesting to me and is vital to public safety. The internship has taught me a lot about Geographic Information System (GIS) and planning techniques that will help me with my future career goals.

What personal insights or lessons have you learned from your experience in the office?

Research is important for every task. Often, some of the most basic permits still require a thorough review to ensure everything is in line. This can include looking at a property and examining each detail of a permit request.

Brennan Tarleton, Talbot County Planning Officer, and Bryce Yelton, Assistant Planning Officer, both alumni of Salisbury University, worked with the college to make the internship a success. While the Department has facilitated internship opportunities in the past, this is the first time the Department was able to partner with Salisbury University to offer an internship that allows students to receive credits toward their future degree in Urban and Regional Planning.

“Moseley’s strong work ethic and attention to detail made him a quick learner of the ins and outs of the Department,” said Tarleton. “We were delighted to have him for this internship, and I believe it was a great opportunity for him to get the full picture of what planning looks like at the local level.”

“We hope to continue offering opportunities like this to allow students to get ‘real-world’ experience on the concepts they learn in the classroom,” said Yelton. “If I had had this opportunity in school, I absolutely would have taken it…and we would like to be able to provide that for future planners for our region and state.”

To learn more about internship and job opportunities with Talbot County, contact Administrative Services at 410-770-8012 or visit

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Page last modified Friday, May 3, 2024 11:38:20 AM