This past summer I moved to Santa Barbara and interned for a nonprofit called Dream Foundation. Dream Foundation is the first and largest national wish-granting organization for adults who have been given a year or less life expectancy. The foundation fulfills dreams from lifelong dreams to basic need items, bedside reunions or meaningful experiences with loved ones.
At Dream Foundation, I was the communications intern and was given many responsibilities that varied from writing press releases, producing web content and pitching to the media. Of all the internships I have had over the years — and I have had many — this is hands down the most rewarding and beneficial work experience I have had thus far.
Nonprofits are sometimes overlooked because of the low pay that comes with working there, but it’s here where young professionals can gain the experience they need. “The fact is, nonprofits can offer fantastic opportunities for individuals who are willing to work hard to make the world a better place,” says Rebecca Andruszka, a writer for The Daily Muse, a website that offers career advice. Here are my top three reasons you should consider working or interning for a nonprofit.
1. The experience is a resume builder and you will expand your skills
Most nonprofits don’t have the funding needed to be able to hire all the employees they need. This means the staff and interns they have will have many responsibilities and a heavy workload. Many of the responsibilities aren’t specific to what your job title is and more often than not, cross over into different departments. This allows for more hands-on opportunities.
2. Expanding your network
Most nonprofits have a team of board members that is highly involved in the activities of the foundation and also have many corporations who sponsor, offer services or volunteer for the foundation. This is beneficial for both employees and interns because you will get the opportunity to network with these people who are of great importance to the foundation.
3. Meet talented and passionate people
People who work in nonprofits are some of the most amazing people you will ever get to meet. They are good at what they do and don’t do it just for the money. They truly work hard to make the world a better place and to bring happiness to those who need it most.
So the next time you’re searching for an internship or job, consider working for a nonprofit to gain valuable experience while making the world a better place.