US PIRG Internship Opportunity

Posted September 17, 2012 Employer: U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG)
Approximate Deadline: December 2012

This fall, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) is seeking an intern to assist with research and media outreach focused on issues including tracking corporate tax loopholes, government contracting transparency, and privatization.

An internship with U.S. PIRG gives qualified and hard-working individuals the opportunity to work with our staff, studying some of our nation’s most pressing problems and breaking them down into manageable projects, ones in which the outcomes can be influenced by the right combination of careful research, a smart political strategy, and demonstrable public support.  The intern will work in a busy office with a number of other public advocacy organizations. Throughout the semester, interns will work with U.S. PIRG staff to:


• Conduct investigative research.  Facts, figures and examples are the bedrock of any intelligent public policy debate. As a U.S. PIRG intern, you will conduct research on topics including U.S. PIRG’s upcoming report evaluating how well each of the 30 largest cities in the U.S. provide online access to information about government contracting, subsidies, and services.  Activities will include creating contact lists for each mayor’s office, communicating with local government officials, and identifying cutting-edge transparency features.  Interns will also provide research assistance related to U.S. PIRG’s campaign to expose use of corporate tax loopholes, such as studying and maintaining a list of past legal settlements resulting from corporate wrongdoing.

• Generate media coverage. The spotlight of media attention helps to inform the public, offer new perspectives on old problems, and put decision-makers on notice that the public is watching their actions. U.S. PIRG interns will work to get our issues and opinions covered in the media, through news releases, letters to editors, “op-eds,” and more.  U.S. PIRG interns will write and submit three letters to editors per week, assist with media outreach for report releases, maintain and expand media contact lists for each project, prepare for and take part in press conferences, and track media coverage of issues we work on.

• Organize political support. When public interest proposals meet special interest resistance, public support can provide the push to overcome political opposition. U.S. PIRG interns will help to broaden the Financial Accountability and Corporate Transparency (FACT) Coalition, which is comprised of consumer and public policy organizations, small business, labor and faith groups.  The coalition strives to increase financial accountability and transparency within financial institutions, corporations, and the government.

What qualities and abilities does being a U.S. PIRG intern require?

A strong commitment to public interest issues. A particular interest in how government policies affect the lives of individuals and communities.  The ability to frame a debate on your own terms.  Very strong writing skills.  The ability to multitask.  The ability to think strategically.

Most U.S. PIRG interns are undergraduate or graduate students in law, public policy, economics, urban studies or environmental studies, but students in any area of study may apply. Intern supervisors provide ongoing training. Previous campaign and/or advocacy experience is a plus.

How To Apply

Interested students should submit a compelling cover letter and resume to Patrick Nagle, Boston Internship Coordinator, at

We are currently working to fill positions for the Fall 2012 semester.

  • Contact

    Department of Political Science
    301 Meserve Hall
    Northeastern University
    Boston, MA 02115
    617-373-2796 (Ph)
    617-373-5311 (F)
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