Organizing for America – Texas Headquarters
Fall 2012 Site Review
Position: Field Organizer Intern
Student: Psychology Junior
I interned with the Organizing for America, the president’s campaign in Texas, as a field organizer. Most field organizers in battleground states are responsible for helping organize and run campaign activities in a neighborhood or small section of a city called a “turf,” but Texas wasn’t a battleground state in 2012, so we didn’t have the resources to hire more than 10 staff. Because of this, Texas FOs ended up organizing multiple turfs or, in some cases, even entire cities.
I spent most of my internship interacting with volunteers. Anytime a volunteer walked into our field office, it was my job to greet them, help them sign in, train them to make calls or enter data, answer questions, and make sure they walked away happy and planning to come back. I also organized phone banks and neighborhood team meetings, entered data into our campaign database, kept track of office sign-in sheets and supply inventories, and supervised volunteer leadership.
My hours were initially fairly light, but the pace picked up as Election Day approached. At 30 days out, I was in the office from 10 am to 9 pm 7 days a week. By 14 days out, I was working 9 am to 12 am getting ready for Election Day. In the final four days of the campaign, I never left the office for more than four hours. By the time Romney conceded on November 6th, I had been awake for 31 consecutive hours.
This was by far the most intense internship I can imagine, but at the end of everything I took a 20-hour nap and woke up feeling more satisfied than I have in my entire life.