Thursday, May 24, 2012
Demystifying Nonprofits: Helping College Grads See a Career of Service - NPQ – Nonprofit Quarterly - Promoting an active an engaged democracy.
Demystifying Nonprofits: Helping College Grads See a Career of Service - NPQ – Nonprofit Quarterly - Promoting an active an engaged democracy.: In hopes of encouraging members of the class of 2012 to broaden their employment horizons, I will attempt to demystify the nonprofit sector and clear up three of the most common misconceptions I hear about the industry from college students, the first of which is that nonprofits are fundamentally different from for-profit businesses. Last week I had the “What are you doing after graduation” conversation with a college student I mentor. He said that he wanted to work at a for-profit where he would try to make as much money for the company as possible by selling their products and serving their target customers. I could only smirk and follow-up with, “How does that differ from working for an NPO?” Caught off guard, he replied, “Nonprofits don’t make money, don’t have customers and...” he couldn’t elaborate much more. I laughed and replied, “That’s exactly what I do! And if I don’t do it well, I will most likely be fired.” He looked at me completely perplexed, which lead me to get on this soapbox.