Throughout the next few weeks, we want to give the UWBucks Community a chance to meet our six awesome interns! Each Wednesday, we will feature a post by an intern telling you a little bit about themselves and their mission for the summer. This week is Kelly Schmidt, a member of our Resource Development team!
My name is Kelly Schmidt, and I am currently an undergraduate student at American University. I will be entering my sophomore year this fall, and I major in economics and political science. I am originally from Stratford, New Jersey, right across the bridge from South Philadelphia. I lived there until I was three years old, then moved to northern California with my parents. I returned to this area in the summer of 2007, and have lived in Doylestown ever since.
My mother works for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Bucks County, and it was through her that I heard about the summer internship opportunity at United Way. I was directed to the UW Bucks Facebook page where the details were posted, sent my application in, and am now here 4 weeks into the 10-week program as a Campaign and Resource Development intern.
If you had asked me months ago, what pillar of non-profit work interested me most, I would not have said dealing with money. However, the last few months have been one of the most self-reflective times of my life. I have now become increasingly passionate about the revenue streams of social justice efforts, realizing that the good work of organizations like United Way could not happen without sufficient sums of money flowing in. This has translated into a bit of a shift in career desires for me. I’m not exactly sure which piece of the social justice equation will end up as my career path, but I’m increasingly sure that I’ll want to be on the monetary end of things. Yet, ever since I was 9 or 10 years old, a career in law has been attractive to me as well. At this point, things are definitely up in the air, but I’m grateful that opportunities with an organization such as the United Way of Bucks County will help me gain some hands-on experience in the non-profit world.
This changing mindset has left me incredibly excited to be a part of the resource development team at United Way of Bucks County. I will be working with my supervisor as well as another intern, Caitlyn, on many projects. We will mostly focus on expanding the database of emails of individual donors throughout the county. As of now, this has taken the form of visiting local businesses, such as Giant Food Stores, throughout the county. Caitlyn and I thank them for their support during the campaign, which takes place in the fall, and then politely leave a sign-up list for the employees to provide their email addresses if they so choose. The purpose of this is to expand United Way’s exposure, and to simply keep our donors informed. It has been made clear to me that donors like to see where their money is going.
Overall, I would say my time at United Way of Bucks County has thus far been extraordinary. It has been so rewarding to simply learn not only about resource development or the United Way, but the non-profit profession in general, and I look forward to continue this learning process in the coming weeks.