Describe your current position and what led to your job.
I am currently the Team Coordinator and Event Marketing Coordinator for the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Delaware Chapter. I became interested in working for a non-profit after serving at United Cerebral Palsy through the Service-Learning Scholars Program at UD.
What has been the most rewarding/challenging moment in your career?
The most challenging part of my job is seeing constituents that I have grown close to struggling with MS. It is difficult to see people I care about suffering, but it is also inspiration for me to work even harder raising money to support them, and support research for a cure.
The most rewarding part of my job is being able to cultivate direct relationships with the people we are serving. We are a small chapter and there is no intermediary between me and our clients with MS. I hear directly from them what they need, what we could do better as a chapter to make their lives easier, and I hear the thank yous and stories about the positive impact that something I have done in my work has had on their lives, as well. If you are working in public service, there is no reward greater than hearing and seeing that something you have done has worked to help another person.
What is the best career advice you have received?
I think a great piece of advice that was passed to me is to try never to “burn bridges” in your professional life because that person will inevitably resurface in your life at the most inopportune time. And on the positive side of that same sentiment, always be networking within your field and community because you never know how someone you meet might be able to help you, or visa versa, later in life.
What would you recommend to someone interested in working in your field?
I recommend that a student interested in working in the non-profit realm try to gain some experience with non-profits through volunteerism or internships to get a foot in the door.
What skills are necessary or what prepared you the most for your career?
I think one of the most important skills to have in my position is the ability to communicate clearly. Our marketing materials and other event information go out to a diverse demographic of constituents, and it’s important to be able to communicate in a way that is accessible to everyone. It is also important to have equally strong interpersonal and technical writing skills in this position. I work face-to-face with clients and fundraising participants daily, and especially in a non-profit, it is as important for me to build strong, personal relationships with those people as it is for me to produce quality marketing materials.
What professional associations have aided in your professional development?
My previous experience as a Service-Learning Scholar at United Cerebral Palsy was integral to my preparation for this position. That program allowed me to work on marketing projects for a non-profit, like I am doing now, but under the supervision of my faculty mentor. The guidance from my mentor as I was tackling marketing projects for the first time in a real workplace really allowed me to fine-tune my skills.
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