OTA has long welcomed interns into its office as part of its mission to promote and protect the growth of organic trade to benefit the environment, farmers, the public and the economy. In 2007, OTA decided to establish a formal internship program, with the hope of continuing its history of attracting qualified candidates from area high schools, colleges and universities. The program, which is predicated on a belief in the value of hands-on experience, promotes interns’ active involvement in a wide range of OTA projects. In doing so, the program strives to educate interns about both the organic industry and business and facilitate the development of skills relevant to the intern’s long-term educational and professional goals.
The OTA internship program is open to high school seniors and college students who are officially enrolled in an academic program. Recent college graduates (those who have graduated within one calendar year of their application to OTA) are also encouraged to apply.
OTA welcomes applicants from all disciplinary backgrounds, but will show preference towards those applicants who have a demonstrated interest in the types of issues/projects and activities in which OTA is involved.
Internship Duration and Pay
Two to three paid internships at OTA are offered throughout the year. Interns are expected to commit between 20 and 40 hours per week to their work at OTA, with the understanding that the time commitment may vary depending on the projects in which they are involved. Some travel is required.
There are no benefits tied to this internship. Interns are expected to provide their own housing and transportation during their time at OTA.
The Application Process
Students interested in becoming an intern at OTA must submit a completed application. First, please complete and submit the Intern Application Form by Clicking Here. Secondly, send all support materials including a cover letter, resume and two (2) letters of recommendation via email with "OTA Internship Program" in the subject line to email@example.com. Please submit the Intern Application Form and send all materials by a minimum of eight (8) weeks prior to the anticipated start of the internship. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.
Selected internship candidates will be contacted either by phone or email to set up an interview, after which a final decision about their candidacy will be made.
Opportunities at OTA
As an intern at OTA, you will have many opportunities for personal and professional growth. Working one-on-one with your OTA supervisor, you will determine how your personal and professional strengths can be most effectively be used to achieve your educational and/or career goals and satisfy OTA’s organizational needs. As often as possible you will be assigned projects that work with and expand upon your existing skill set and expose you to the wide range of activities performed by the staff at OTA. You are also encouraged to develop projects and initiatives that assist OTA in fulfilling its mission.
Projects in which interns may be involved include:
- Member sales and service
- IT support
- Database maintenance and programming
- Website maintenance
- Event planning
- Coordinating travel and hotel accommodations for OTA staff
- Researching computer system upgrades
- Editing OTA marketing materials and reports
- Updating the OTA member database
- Identifying member prospects
- Researching organic standards and legislation
- Engaging/enlisting member support in grassroots campaigns
If you are interested in learning more about the internship opportunities at the Organic Trade Association, please contact OTA at 802.275.3811 or firstname.lastname@example.org
About The Organic Trade Association
The Organic Trade Association (OTA) was established in 1985 in the United States and Canada as the membership-based business association for the organic industry in North America. With a current membership of over 1,300 members, OTA represents businesses across the organic supply chain and addresses all things organic, including food, fiber/textiles, personal care products, and new sectors as they develop. Over sixty percent of OTA trade members are small businesses.
Since its inception, the association has been a key player in shaping both the regulatory and market environment for organic products. OTA is a leader in advocating and protecting organic standards so that consumers can have confidence in certified organic production. With input from its diverse membership, OTA continues to develop and refine organic standards for emerging product areas. OTA monitors the work of government agencies, takes positions on legislation that affects organic agriculture and products, and represents the industry to regulators, elected officials, and international bodies. OTA also works on many fronts to support the transition to organic farming, processing, and handling.