The Organic Center Seeks Applications for Fellowship Position

The Organic Center Science Program Fellowship


*All interested applicants should apply by sending their materials to Stephanie Jerger;

* Applications are due by 5pm ET, June 23rd

*This fellowship will be a 5-month limited, remote role from July 1 to December 1, 2023


About The Organic Center

The Organic Center is a 501(c)(3) non-profit, established in 2002 and currently housed under the administrative auspices of the Organic Trade Association (OTA) in Washington, D.C. The Center’s mission is to convene and conduct credible, evidence-based science on the health and environmental impacts of organic food and farming, and to communicate peer-reviewed research to the public. Our activities advance the organic industry by building community, filling knowledge gaps, and communicating the benefits of organic to consumers. We work closely with OTA staff to accomplish multidisciplinary goals and are directed by OTA’s Executive Director/CEO and an independent board of trustees.

Position Summary

The Organic Center seeks candidates for a Science Program Fellowship to advance work that aims to increase the organic research network, collaboration and resource-sharing, and expand justice, equity, diversity, and inclusion in our programming related to organic research and education. This position will be offered as a 5-month appointment from 7/1/23 to 12/1/23 up to 300 hours of work for the entire fellowship.

This fellowship position is intended for a current undergraduate student, and designed to provide experience and education to enhance skills that can be used throughout a career in data science, program development, the food and agriculture industries, or nonprofit management. The Scientific Program Fellow will gain experience and education through their co-mentors, Dr. Amber Sciligo, Director of Science Programs at The Organic Center, and Dr. Emily Burchfield, Assistant Professor of Environmental Sciences at Emory University. The fellow will be offered opportunity to observe and participate in activities that provide broad exposure to a variety of researchers and food and agriculture stakeholders. While food system subject matter expertise is not a requirement, this is an excellent opportunity for a student interested in a career related to food, agriculture or the environment, and the expansion of JEDI.

Duties and responsibilities

The Science Program Fellow will be an active, contributing member of the TOC Scientific Program team and will gain education through experience and exposure to scientific program management and program administration functions. The fellow will achieve significant exposure to the food and agriculture research landscape by observing and participating in meetings within The Organic Center, with current and potential partners and colleagues in the government, nonprofit, business, and academic sectors.

The primary focus of activity for the fellow will be to build a database of organic aligned researchers and organic research/education resources throughout the US, starting with HBCUs and other minority serving institutions. The database will be used to develop an interactive mapping tool to strengthen the organic research community, build collaboration, and increase the relevance and accessibility of organic research for local and regional farming communities.

Specific duties will include:
  • Populate and manage a database for the development of a geospatial mapping tool;
  • Identify and record available researchers aligned with organic/agroecology;
  • Identify and record available research resources including organic research farms, graduate student programs, funding opportunities, and farmer group collaborators;
  • Collaborate with the creators of existing databases to merge with our database;
  • As needed, attend and present progress at internal and external meetings.
  • Completion of at least 2 years of college or university education
  • Continuing student at a college or university working toward a BSc or BA
  • Excellent online research skills
  • Proficiency in database management/data entry in Microsoft Excel
  • Experience working with spatial data (e.g. ArcGIS, Python, R) and open-source web-mapping tools (e.g. Leaflet, Shiny, Markdown) considered a plus
  • Excellent communication skills, both oral and written
  • Knowledge of Microsoft Office suite
  • Strong problem-solving and analytical skills
  • Customer service orientation and experience
  • Knowledge of food and agriculture science and/or policy issues
  • Demonstrated experience leading and managing projects and programs
Travel Requirements

There are no travel requirements for this fellowship position.  


The 5-month fellowship will have a cap of 300 hrs paid at a rate of $30/hr. As a fellowship position, benefits are not included for this tax-exempt opportunity.

How to Apply

Please send your CV with a cover letter explaining how you meet you the qualifications and a statement of interest in this fellowship position to Stephanie Jerger at

Applications are due June 23rd by 5 pm ET