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Maximize your YNPN-TC membership: How to create connections and change at a national level

Joining YNPN Twin Cities was the easiest thing I did upon moving to Minnesota a few years ago. After months of planning and orchestrating a cross-country move, I crossed off my top professional networking task simply by filling out a super short form and clicking a sign up button – no dues, no back and forth.

Within weeks of joining, I was at my first YNPN-TC event and plugging into a network which has since helped me make important professional connections, build professional skills, and be a part of a meaningful space for questions and conversations on how we can shape the nonprofit sector from within.

I knew there were other YNPN chapters across the country, and that there was an overarching YNPN national organization as well, but never quite knew how it all worked together. 

In the time since, I’ve joined the YNPN-TC board and in my current role as National Liaison, I am passionate about helping our local YNPN members take advantage of being part of our national network as well!

Below, I’ve listed five ways I’ve learned to plug into the YNPN landscape beyond the Land of 10,000 Lakes:

  1. Connect with other chapters across the country. With 50,000 members in 44 chapters, there’s never a shortage of idea and resource sharing. Search for and follow other chapters on social media, join a few more email lists, and benefit from the thought leadership of our peers across the United States.

  2. While you’re at it, make a few strategic connections with our affiliate chapters. Whether you’re thinking about moving to a new city or you need to connect with people in other regions, your fellow YNPNers are a good place to start. Reach out to our partner chapters or do some Twitter and LinkedIn research, and you already have networks of peers across the country who can help you connect.

  3. Plug into the national work of YNPN. Our friends at the national office in Portland, Oregon, are committed to supporting the work of local chapters, and providing a unified voice for YNPNers in national thought leadership and advocacy efforts. Visit YNPN’s website and follow them on social media to learn more about their work, and follow our communications for alerts when they are looking for chapter volunteers to assist with their national leadership.

  4. Seek YNPN peers out at conferences. If your work takes you to any conferences, you’ll likely already have a built-in network of YNPNers attending as well. I’ve learned to seek them out soon after arriving; it’s amazing how quickly you can find a group by Tweeting a time and a place to meet with the conference’s hashtag!

  5. Start by becoming a YNPN Twin Cities member for free! Our local YNPN chapter is one of a handful across the country which does not charge fees for membership, removing a potential barrier to joining our network. (However, you can donate to YNPN-TC as we are a 501(c)(3) now). Whether you are a nonprofit professional, new to the sector, or a student wanting to become more involved, join us for free for local programming, membership benefits (including scholarships and discounts), and the opportunity become a part a larger nationwide movement.

Want to be the next National Liaison for YNPN-TC? Apply to join the YNPN-TC Board of Directors by THIS Saturday (September 30). If you have questions about becoming a board member or how to connect with YNPN on a national level, email us at info@ynpntwincities.org.


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