Students Explore Nonprofits in Indianapolis
By Shruti Mungi '19
Twelve students gained first-hand experience from nonprofit industry professionals and Knox alumni during the spring break experience Exploring Nonprofits in Indianapolis.
The four-day immersion trip provided opportunities for students to meet with and learn about different not-for-profit organizations. During their stay in Indianapolis, they met with alumni CEOs and professionals, experienced a speed networking session in various nonprofit areas, toured organizations, attended a theatre performance, and participated in a volunteer project.
“The trip adds valuable exposure for students to learn more about the real-life experiences of a nonprofit organization and the opportunities available in the field,” said Knox Associate Director of Alumni Engagement Eric Johnson, who accompanied the students. “It also provides the chance for students to build their network with alumni and other professionals working in a nonprofit career.”
Activities during the trip included community involvement discussions at the Lucas Oil Stadium and Fairbanks Hospital & Hope Academy, and introductions to IUPUI Lilly Family School of Philanthropy programs.
Michael Moss ‘20 found the speed networking and career panel with nonprofit professionals particularly useful in reinforcing the ideas he had about the future. “It provided the opportunity to talk with so many different people from vastly different nonprofit careers, and listen to them passionately discuss the importance of their roles in their communities,” he said.
Those participating in the trip had listed specific goals they wanted to achieve prior to the trip. Moss, an economics major, was interested in learning about the way public policy impacts nonprofits.
“The trip was able to help me realize a very specific interest in public policy that affects and is influenced by nonprofit organizations,” Moss said. “I’ve had a general interest in working in the nonprofit sector for a while now and thought that it would be valuable to discuss specifics into the why, how, and what with nonprofit organizations and individuals.”
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During the trip, students were able to enhance their networking skills and identify the areas of nonprofits that most interested them while being under professional guidance. Through this experience, Jaki Herrmann ‘19 found an invaluable alumni connection in Joyce Hertko '82, director of community outreach and engagement at Indiana University Health.
“Talking to her was really informal, and I got to ask a lot of the questions that I didn't feel comfortable with asking during speed networking or the more formal events,” Herrmann said. “We're both AnSo majors, so I was able to really get a sense of how she used her major after Knox.”
“I was also able to ask a majority of the alumni if they pursued further education after Knox, which has been something I've been debating over. They were able to give me individualized advice grounded in their own experience, which was invaluable to me,” she added.
Shivant Shrestha ‘19, a double major in environmental studies and business & management, participated in the trip to learn about the integration of sustainable management into nonprofits.
Shrestha lauded the trip for helping him narrow down his academic and professional interests. “It presented me with a small glimpse into the different kinds of ways I can make my majors fit in different nonprofit areas. It also showed me how honing your skills and network can be so beneficial.”
The immersion trip was hosted by the Bastian Family Career Center and the Office of Alumni Relations as part of the KNect alumni networking program. The program creates opportunities for students to meet with successful alumni and see firsthand how they are excelling in various endeavors.
Students who participated in the trip were:
Published on April 05, 2019