Getting Involved In Organizations = Professional Development

BY HOLLY LOGAN, OUTREACH SPECIALIST – TEMPLE UNIVERSITY CAREER CENTER

Are you trying to find more ways to get involved on campus or in your community?

Do you have a passion for leadership?

Are you a strategic thinker?

If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, then you might consider joining an organization with the eventual aim of serving at the officer/board level. It could be an E-board of a student organization or it could be a Board of Directors for a non-profit organization. Or maybe a steering committee. Participating on a board is an opportunity to show your commitment to an idea or movement on a deeper level.

For example, outside of my full-time job with Temple University’s Career Center, I served on the board of directors of Kensington Community Food Cooperative (KCFC) for three years. KCFC is a member-owned grocery store opening in the Kensington neighborhood of Philadelphia. I support KCFC because I value improving food access and affordability, as well as strengthening economic and food justice in my community. Since KCFC is a start-up food co-op, they’re currently run by a working board which means they’re fundraising, recruiting member-owners, hiring a general manager, all the while trying to get the store open! It’s a lot of work, but it’s also an incredible professional development experience as I learned about raising money, managing budgets, group facilitation, human resources, community relations, and much more!

Sometimes board participation means more governing or oversight of a staff and sometimes it means offering advice or recommendations. All of these have varying levels of commitment in terms of hours and years/semesters, so be sure to determine what works best to align with your passions while also keeping balanced with your academics and other responsibilities.

If you’re new to Temple University, consider joining a student organization to develop your interests and passions, and eventually you can use experience at the officer/board level in future job interviews!

Need help describing your board or committee experience on your resume or LinkedIn profile? Stop by the Career Center during Drop-ins (Monday – Friday, 11 am – 3 pm) or make an appointment with a Career Coach on the OwlNetwork.

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