I have officially finished orientation for the Development Summer Internship Program (D-SIP), and I am about to dive in to my first day on the job. Throughout the summer, I will be interning with the UM University Development Office of Planned Giving and taking a class in fundraising in higher education every week. I was nervous to pursue D-SIP since my childhood experiences with fundraising were awful, but I took the leap because I would rather dig deeper into those experiences and re-approach the field from an informed place than let the past dictate my future.
Despite taking the leap of faith into this program, I was still relieved and excited to learn that my internship will not involve directly making asks to donors but will instead focus on thanking and appreciating donors for the gifts they have already committed to. I have spent a fair amount of time in the last year learning about the power of positivity in individuals, relationships, and organizations, and I am really excited to help infuse these practices further into the university through this opportunity.
With the combination of coursework and practical experience, the opportunities for growth are immense this summer. Not only will I gain a deeper understanding of development and the theories and practices that inform the field, I will also have the opportunity to connect with professionals in the field and gain insights from their experiences. I am hoping to stay in higher education for my career, so whether I end up staying in development or going elsewhere, I have no doubt that this experience will be instrumental in paving the way. I’m excited to share this summer of growth and learning with all of you! Let’s get this show on the road.