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Internship Spotlight: Adela Kim ’23, CCS Fundraising

Joint-degree student Adela Kim ’23 spent her summer internship gaining hands-on experience with the nonprofit organization CCS Fundraising.

We asked rising second-year MBA students to check in from their summer internships, where they are applying the lessons of their first year at Yale SOM.

Adela Kim

Adela Kim ’23

Joint degree: PhD, History of Art
Internship: CCS Fundraising, New York
Hometown: New York, New York
Pronouns: she/her/hers
Clubs and affiliations: Arts & Culture ClubSocial Impact Consulting Club; Food, Agribusiness, and Beverage; Asian American & Pacific Islander Association 
Favorite SOM class: Impact Measurement & Financial Reporting in the Social Sector
Favorite SOM professor: Raphael Duguay
Favorite New Haven eatery: September in Bangkok
Favorite thing you do in New Haven or SOM to unwind: Visit the latest exhibitions at the Yale University Art Gallery
Favorite pizza: White clam pizza at Zuppardi’s in West Haven

My summer internship at CCS Fundraising was an incredible opportunity to gain hands-on experience in campaign management and strategic planning for leading nonprofit organizations. I chose to pursue a joint MBA and PhD in the history of art to examine how nonprofit organizations can realize their maximum impact while fostering deeper relations with their stakeholders and remaining sustainable in the future. When I came across CCS Fundraising, I was struck by the firm’s transformational partnership with organizations that work toward a more just society. The rest is history.

During the summer, I had the privilege of working with two major nonprofit organizations in the advocacy and higher education sectors. For an organization that focuses on suicide prevention among LGBTQ+ youth, I devised and conducted a peer benchmarking survey among 13 $100 million-plus international nonprofit organizations. It was a tremendous learning opportunity to interview the organizations and gain insight into their operations, as well as their thoughts on the future of nonprofit organizations. Afterward, I interpreted the data to see how the client could sustainably scale up and expand its reach. My other client was one of the oldest student-run newspapers in the United States. For them, I oversaw the launch of the public phase of a major campaign, including risk mitigation and class captain training.

The classes at the School of Management, such as Impact Measurement & Financial Reporting in the Social Sector, equipped me for success over the summer. In particular, much of Professor Duguay’s class was dedicated to analyzing IRS form 990s—the financial reporting form for nonprofits—which was a crucial component to the peer benchmarking survey. I also carried over the lesson on workplace culture in professors Amy Wrzesniewski and James Baron’s Workforce class to engage multiple stakeholders. Similarly, the Social Impact Consulting Club helped me approach the campaign with a solutions-oriented mindset and deploy data analytics.

In addition to the work, another rewarding aspect of the summer was the opportunity to network with SOM alums and others at CCS Fundraising. I connected with Abby Martin ’19, who generously guided me through the multifaceted field of philanthropy and the firm. I also had the privilege of working and learning under the guidance of Miriam Droller ’08, whose expertise in the nonprofit sector is unparalleled. Alongside the wonderful SOM alums, my colleagues at CCS Fundraising went out of their way to foster a kind and passionate community. Numerous colleagues reached out to me during my first week of work, and our conversations ranged from our diverse backgrounds to our many shared interests, such as the arts and culture sector. The robust mentorship program also put me in contact with more colleagues, from whom which I received invaluable advice and support.

Overall, this summer was a highly enriching and inspiring experience, and I am immensely grateful to both CCS Fundraising and the School of Management for making this possible!

Adela Kim is a recipient of the Frederick Frank ’54 BA Scholarship (2021-2022).