I did it. I made one of the most elusive career moves out there: I switched from private to nonprofit sector.
Before I talk about my nonprofit journey, let’s go back a few years: spring semester freshmen year at college. I was a student at the University of Wisconsin and the newest recruit of Tau Kappa Epsilon (TKE) Fraternity. TKE exposed me to the world of volunteering, which served as the backbone for my interest in the nonprofit sector.
After the shower of grad caps, I randomly landed in the telecommunications industry for more than four years–where I often found myself daydreaming about a career in the nonprofit sector. I asked for advice from mentors, friends and co-workers. Some believed I should volunteer while I worked my corporate job. Others told me to follow my dreams. In December 2008, I lost my telecom job and came face-to-face with the very question I was pondering: continue to work in telecommunications or embark on a fulfilling career in the nonprofit sector?Read more
Minnesota Association of Volunteer Administration (MAVA) is a membership association of about 800 leaders of volunteers, mostly professional volunteer program administrators, from across the state. It's a forum for members to become engaged with professional development and share resources. MAVA conducts the latest research on volunteerism, including engaging new immigrant communities, best practices for engaging baby boomers and the impact of the recession.
Jay Haapala—current board chair for MAVA and volunteer services administrator at the Minnesota Children’s Museum—was gracious enough to provide The Bridge an inside view of MAVA.Read more