The Internship Fund (IF) is a special SOM tradition and first-year-led club that provides financial support to students who pursue summer internships in the public or non-profit sectors. Every year since the Fund’s inception in 1979, approximately 10 to 20% of the first-year class has received funding raised from the entire SOM community. IF embodies Yale SOM’s mission—to educate leaders for business and society—and galvanizes SOM’s spirit of cooperation and social responsibility.
This year’s committee, led by Co-Chairs Giovanni Cruz ’20 and Irene Koo ’20, sought to evoke a sense of gratitude, responsibility, and community, while encouraging action, through the theme: Pay it Forward. By supporting IF, donors would not only create new opportunities for the Fund recipients, but also have a positive impact on the communities their peers will work with this upcoming summer. And this year is especially meaningful because it is IF’s 40th anniversary!
Between Student Fundraising Week (SFW), which is the weeklong effort to solicit donations from throughout SOM, and the SOM annual talent show called Star Search, last week featured a flurry of IF activity. SFW Chair Amanda Hatheway ’20 worked tirelessly to put on events each day that played on the “Pay it Forward” theme. These ranged from an opportunity to “pay spirit forward” with a photo op featuring Yale’s beloved bulldog mascot, Handsome Dan, to a chance to “pay love forward” by sending a singing valentine from SOM’s a capella group, Economies of Scale. Star Search capped off the week on Thursday, with Star Search Chair Anh Vu ’20 choregraphing an amazing night that showcased the many, varied talents of SOM students.
Thanks to the combined efforts of SFW and Star Search, in just one week, the IF team raised $42,500, more than fully funding three students’ summer internships. But even more impressive is that the participation rate among the Class of 2020 reached a whopping 92%. It was a truly inspiring week, one that brought the entire SOM community together in support of our classmates. It’s times like these that make me proud to be a part of SOM!