Summer Research Intern - OUSA


Formed in 1992, the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA) is a non-profit advocacy organization that strives to effectively and responsibly represent Ontario’s full and part-time undergraduate students to lobby for an affordable, accessible, accountable, and high-quality higher education system. In order to achieve these goals, OUSA provides research and policy solutions to government, organizes campaigns, communicates their priorities, and develops partnerships with post-secondary education sector stakeholders. With a membership of approximately 150,000 undergraduate, professional full and part-time students, OUSA is one of the largest and most respected student organizations in the country.


DEADLINE: Tuesday February 25th at 5:00PM

POSITION:   Summer Research Intern

EMPLOYMENT TERM: 16 weeks from May 4thth to August 21st, 2020  

COMPENSATION:  $15 per hour, 35 hours per week


OUSA is looking for a skilled and passionate research intern to join our close-knit team for the summer. This opportunity is for students who have some knowledge of student issues and advocacy, but are eager to learn more.


Under the guidance of the Research and Policy Analysts, the summer intern will be working in a small and energetic office while engaging with complex policy topics, conducting qualitative and quantitative research, and contributing to OUSA’s publications. This internship offers the opportunity to develop research skills and explore personal research interests while learning about advocacy and public policy in Ontario.



To be eligible for the internship, applicants must:

  • Currently be enrolled as an undergraduate student at one of OUSA’s member institutions (Brock, Queen’s, Trent Durham, Laurentian, Laurier, McMaster, Waterloo, Western)
  • Not have held a prior position with OUSA as a staff member or Director



The successful candidate will:

  • Possess a working knowledge of MS Word and Excel
  • Possess excellent oral and written communication skills    
  • Have employment or academic experience with research methods and policy
  • Demonstrate an ability to thrive in a collaborative, team-based environment
  • Possess a keen interest in post-secondary education and Ontario politics, and demonstrate an appreciation for OUSA’s mandate and mission



The OUSA summer intern will undertake special projects in the areas of research and policy, as well as support the OUSA home office team in the day-to-day operations of the organization. Reporting to the Research and Policy Analysts, the Summer Intern is responsible for:

  • Develop and carry out independent research and policy projects on topics designated by the organization, and supervised by the Research & Policy Analysts and Executive Director;
  • Revise and/or create updated issue briefings for the website;
  • Assist with the review, analysis and publication of data from the Ontario Post-Secondary Student Survey;
  • Author periodic blog updates on research findings on OUSA policy priorities;
  • Participate in, and support the planning of summer conferences;
  • Revise, when required, facts and figures in standing policies of OUSA; and
  • Support the work of the Research & Policy Analysts and Executive Director in projects as required.



In addition to providing a cover letter and resume that highlights how you meet the above qualifications, applicants must also complete and submit a one-page assignment that demonstrates their communication and research skills.

The assignment can be found below.



Suppose that OUSA is introducing a new policy paper on the topic of Environmental Sustainability. Steering Committee, OUSA’s student board of directors,  has identified a gap in our advocacy efforts in this area and has directed us to present a proposal outlining the key issues and possible recommendations.


To prepare this proposal, the Research Analysts have asked you, as the Research Intern, to conduct preliminary research on current context, high-level issues, and areas of focus.


For this assignment, please prepare an action plan as to what your process would look like. You do not need to conduct the research.


This action plan should cover the following:

  • An outline of the steps you would take;
  • The questions that would guide your research;
  • The types of resources you would engage with;
  • The scope of your research and how you would approach gaps in existing research.


-        Your document should be one page (single-spaced) in length

-        Your action plan should be clearly laid out and organized

-        It should include enough explanation to guide someone through your research process

-     This assignment should take approximately 1 hour to complete



More information about OUSA can be found at


Candidates selected for a video conference interview will be contacted by email no later than February 28th. Interviews will be held on Thursday, March 5th and will be available during and after business hours.



Please send your cover letter, resume and completed assignment via e-mail:

Eddy Avila, Executive Director