A Day in the Life at PIRG Campus Action

This post comes to us from Rachel Unger ’15 who is working at PIRG Campus Ac tion and recruiting on campus.


A person is standing in front of other protestor’s wish a sign that reads “No Polluting Energy, Yes Clean, Local Energy and Jobs”

I graduated from Wesleyan in 2015, and I thought it would be hard to find a career where I’d be making a real difference on important social and environmental issues while also having a lot of responsibility and independence right out of college. I’m now working for PIRG Campus Action, and that’s exactly what I’ve found in my job! I work as a Campus Organizer at Salem State University in Massachusetts, where I work closely with students and train and empower them to make a difference on issues they care about. I manage student coordinators and interns working on four different campaigns related to public health, solar energy, making textbooks affordable, and hunger and homelessness.


Two people signing a giant Subway sandwich as part of a campaign to get Subway to use antibiotic-free meat.

And yesterday we had a HUGE VICTORY! We are working to stop the overuse of antibiotics on factory farms, which breeds antibiotic-resistant superbugs, by calling on fast food chains to switch to meat raised without antibiotics. The students I work with created a giant, 3D sub prop and covered it in over 1,000 signatures from their peers, while tweeting at Subway and making phone calls to their headquarters. And we won! Subway just announced that they are switching to all meat raised without antibiotics! My students are so excited to deliver our giant sub to the local Subway along with a thank you card, and I’m very happy to have been a part of this movement.


Two people standing on either side of a large blue bin, overflowing with grocery bags, holding signs that read “Food Drive”

Of course, we don’t have a major win every day, so what do I do on a typical day? It varies a lot, but I might get to campus in the morning and spend some time texting reminders to student volunteers, checking my email, or calling a local newspaper to pitch them on attending an event. Then I might meet with a professor about switching to open textbooks, or meet with a student coordinator to make plans for our National Hunger and Homelessness Week. During lunch, I might help my student volunteers at a campaign table in the dining hall, or perhaps work on crafting props and signs to make our work more visible (we just made a cardboard solar-powered oven!). Later in the afternoon, I’ll attend a campaign team meeting run by a student, help unload donations from a food drive, run a training on activist skills at our core meeting, or attend a community event in town! There’s always a lot going on, and it’s impossible to be bored. And on top of that, I know I’m having a positive impact on issues that matter, and empowering students to become lifelong activists!

If you’re looking for a job where you’re out in the real world, working with people and making a difference, and not stuck behind a desk all day, you should apply to PIRG Campus Action!

Website to apply: pirgcampusaction.org

Materials: Resume and Cover Letter

Early Application Deadline: October 25th

For more info: Contact rachel@masspirgstudents.org, Wesleyan Class of 2015


Jennifer Roach is the Civic Engagement Fellow in Allbritton for the academic year 2015-2016. She is a recent Wesleyan alumni, class of 2014. Since graduating, she has moved to Hartford to continue developing Summer of Solutions Hartford, an urban farming internship program she worked on during her time at Wesleyan.