This is the next in a series of posts by recipients of the 2018 Career Services Summer Funding Grant. We’ve asked funding recipients to reflect on their summer experiences and talk about the industries in which they’ve been spending their summer. You can read the entire series here.

This entry is by Jordan King, WH ’21

When I came into Wharton as a freshman last year, I knew I wanted social impact to be at the forefront of whatever I chose to do. I tried to keep my mind open and explore other fields and careers, but I quickly discovered my heart wasn’t into many of the other opportunities. I watched my friends fill out application after application to banks, consulting firms, and accounting firms, but anytime I tried to fill out those same applications, I kept drawing blanks. I didn’t want to close myself off to opportunities, but I also wanted to work somewhere where I could work closer with and make more of a direct impact on people.

Then, I found Americares. Americares is an international aid and relief nonprofit organization based in Stamford, Connecticut. In addition to responding to Emergencies such as natural disasters and regional crises around the world. In the past year, Americares was one of the leading organizations to respond to the destructive 2017 Hurricanes and deployed several employees on sight in Houston, Puerto Rico, and any other areas affected areas.  Unlike many other organizations, Americares works to partner with local health clinics and defer to the clinics to best support existing infrastructure instead of attempting to replace them within their own communities.

Through the funding offered by Penn, I had the fortune to intern at Americares as the Institutional Relations Intern. My role was housed under the Development department, where I assisted with the fundraising aspect of the organization. My team coordinated with corporate sponsors and foundations to apply for grants and solicit money for the organization’s programs, which then (what was this funding used for).

My work centered around research and suggestions for new funding opportunities, updating our organization’s materials for distribution and use, and assisting in planning our annual Development-wide offsite. The highlight of my summer was having the chance to attend a corporate day of giving in which Americares partnered with Nestle to create disaster preparedness kits for our partner locations.

Prior to the internship, I always knew that I had an interest in working with Non-Governmental Organizations, but this internship cemented that passion and and helped deepened my professional development in the context of a world class organization.

Without funding, I would have never been able to take advantage of the wonderful opportunity and leverage the experience for my future development. This experience has been a great step toward combining my Wharton background with my drive to engage in social impact, and I look forward to using it to further develop my professional development.

Author: Student Perspective

Views and opinions from current Penn students.