The Vegetarian Resource Group Blog

My Internship

Posted on July 30, 2015 by The VRG Blog Editor

By Ivy Grob

Julie Andrews once said, “Sometimes opportunities float right past your
nose. Work hard, apply yourself, and be ready. When an opportunity comes
you can grab it.”

When I first got the email from Charles Stahler back in January about a
possible internship in Baltimore with The Vegetarian Resource Group, I
was overwhelmed with the possibility. Lots of circumstances were unsure,
but one thing stood out as definite in my mind; this was an opportunity
that I could not let pass me by. Plans became final as emails were
exchanged back and forth and it was decided that I would be the 2015
recipient of the Eleanor Wolff Scholarship. My heart was overrun with
joy that it would actually be feasible for me to travel from Florida
because of the kindness from the donors of the scholarship. And as the
spring semester of my first year of college ended and summer finally
arrived, opportunity transformed into reality.

My first day at the VRG office was a full orientation to the operation
of a non-profit, grassroots organization. I was stimulated by
conversation about my environmental interests, and my learning
experience began right away as I was informed about many environmental
organizations that I didn’t know existed. I felt very behind the curve
about current issues, but as my nerves calmed I realized I should not be
embarrassed, as I was here to learn and soak up as much information as I
could. I was endowed with an armful of VRG literature and cookbooks (a
perk to every intern) and I began right away on my assigned projects.

The VRG office is an environment that I had never encountered before in
my professional life; everyone is very laid back and the schedule of the
day is up to you. I learned quickly that this can be a blessing or a
curse but I was determined to finish each article in a timely fashion.
The VRG caters the topics of the articles you write to your interests,
so with my major being Environmental Science, I wrote my projects based
around this background. My assignments included a Teen FAQ about
starting a composting club for environmental benefits and how it relates
to promoting vegetarianism; how to do a vegan class at a Girls Inc.; and
an article exploring whether or not the dining options at my school, The
University of Florida, were truly vegan friendly. Aside from these
larger pieces, I also wrote environmental questions for the vegetarian
game, restaurant guide posts and restaurant reviews, and Veggie Bits for
the Vegetarian Journal. These were especially fun to write, and gave me
good practice with contacting representatives in a professional manner
in order to request new vegan products. I tried everything from vegan
food coloring and nail polish to macaroons and vegan meatballs.

I had the opportunity to see the city of Baltimore and to experience my
first VegFest in Richmond, Virginia by working outreach booths. This
was my favorite part of my internship, and it was incredible to see how
vast the vegan community really is. Even to those who were not vegan or
vegetarian, I was able to have fruitful and civilized conversations with
many people, and to those individuals not willing or ready to make permanent
changes, I was able to offer suggestions to help them in their daily
lives. The VRG strives to be a positive presence for vegans and
non-vegans alike, and I’m glad I got to participate and see this
firsthand at the booths.

Most of all throughout this internship, I have had the opportunity to
grow into a vegan activist that I didn’t previously know existed within
me. By working in an environment of such like-minded people, I never
have to worry about stepping on anyone’s toes by expressing my vegan
beliefs. Before this internship, I thought being vegan just meant you
change your diet and the fabric of your clothes, but now I see it as so
much more. Every time you choose a vegan meal, you are choosing to be an
activist, you are choosing a healthy environment, and you are choosing
to save the life of an animal. As with any important revelation in your
life, you want to have other people have the same passionate
understanding as you. This internship has compelled me to share my vegan
beliefs with others, and has made me realize how important it is to
share as so many people still don’t know what vegan means. I’m truly
grateful to The VRG for this opportunity, and I will continue to promote
veganism for the rest of my life.

For information about The Vegetarian Resource Group internships, see:

To support The Vegetarian Resource Group outreach, donate at:

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