We feature open internship positions to give you a flavor for the many applied learning opportunities available in local and regional food systems work. We also include those with national scope. 

Featured Position for August 2023

Food and Agriculture and Policy Intern

Organization: The Breakthrough Institute

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Who we are at The Breakthrough Institute: 

The Breakthrough Institute (BTI) is a 501(c)3 nonprofit that seeks innovative solutions to environmental and human development challenges in pursuit of a secure, healthier, and more prosperous future. BTI fosters a culture of aspirational, disruptive, and yet evidence-based thinking, and mission-driven, pragmatic problem solving. In our 15+ year history, we have shaped how policymakers, environmental groups, and other thought leaders view climate change, nuclear power, agricultural innovation, international energy development, and other key issues.

You can find out more about our organization here.

Details about the internship opportunity with The Breakthrough Institute: 

Breakthrough is seeking a policy intern for the Food and Agriculture team program, which researches and advocates for ways to raise agricultural productivity and reduce the food system’s carbon footprint while mitigating other environmental impacts. The policy intern will assist with the development of policy proposals and coordinate outreach to policymakers and stakeholders. The policy intern will gain insight into US federal politics, the federal policymaking process, and key stakeholders with interests in environmental and agricultural policies.

The policy intern will report to the Federal Policy Manager for Food and Agriculture and interact with other members of Breakthrough’s Food and Agriculture team as needed. The internship is paid and will run from approximately September to December 2023.

Key Responsibilities: 

  • Learn Breakthrough’s policy priorities, including those that aim to bolster federal agricultural R&D programs and advance opportunities for livestock and food innovation to contribute to climate mitigation, and more.

  • Assist with research, writing, and circulation of public letters, op-eds, blog posts, and policy memos.

  • Track policy opportunities, new legislation, appropriations developments, and Farm Bill updates.

  • Conduct background research on Members of Congress, legislation, and stakeholder groups.

  • Develop and publish a series of blog post explainers that detail federal research, rural development, and trade programs that serve to further Breakthrough’s priorities.

  • Schedule meetings with policymakers, environmental organizations, and agricultural stakeholders, and provide note taking support.

  • Attend Congressional hearings and meetings with climate and agricultural coalitions, USDA staff, and Congressional staff as needed.

Desired Qualifications

  • Pursuing a bachelor’s degree in political science, public policy, government, environmental studies, or another relevant field.

  • Strong verbal and written communications skills.

  • Experience writing for non-technical audiences.

  • Interest in federal environmental, climate or agricultural policy.

  • Experience conducting policy advocacy, communications, or research.

  • Willingness to develop, advocate for, and promote policy solutions that are both pragmatic and bipartisan.

  • A team player who is self-motivated and detail oriented.

Deadline to Apply: September 1, 2023

Location: Washington, D.C.

Hours per week: 10-20

Click here to learn more about the position and apply


feature published on August 2, 2023

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