Goodbye Alexandria, Til we meet again!

August 13, 2007

I'm leaving on a jetplane... My summer with United Way International is done. Almost. Perhaps the best part is just about to begin. They are sending me to Seoul, South Korea to attend the Asia-Pacific Regional Conference, and I fly out tomorrow! I am excited for both personal and professional reasons! But what did I do for the rest of the summer? I need to figure out how to say what I did in just a few sentences! I know that when we all return to New Haven, everyone will be asking "How was your summer? What did you do?" So. Here's what I did in a nutshell. Currently, United Way lives as three separate entities. United Way of America, United Way Canada, and United Way International. The new global initiative is focused on merging all three organizations into one global organization. I was on a team called the "Global Learning Collaborative" which dealt with the learning strategy portion of the global enterprise. .. My boss let me borrow lots of books on Knowledge Management, so I read up on that during my free time. During office hours, I basically interviewed international CEOs of United Way organizations and wrote case studies about their best practices. The case studies are just one part of a larger strategy to help global members find quicker, better solutions to their business challenges. We also launched the first global learning portal at United Way! My final report included recommendations for both short-term and long-term knowledge management strategies for United Way. The summer was definitely amazing and I cant even begin to explain the fun trips and excursions we took on the weekends. I'm pretty sure I will be focusing my full-time job search in the DC area! The reality of school is beginning to slowly come back as we choose courses for the second year, and start the process of filling our Outlooks with pre-scheduled meetings... Ready or not, here it comes! I know this summer has confirmed my interest in the non-profit area, but has also made me realize how important it is to have these "cross-functional" skills that we keep hearing about. The whole new curriculum thing. It makes more sense after working this summer. I like it. The countdown begins. 2 more days before the fun begins for the first years. A few more weeks before we officially become "second years." I'm excited.

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Kendra Suh