Orientation and Beyond

I had a great orientation yesterday with Sandi, Alicia, and Dan at the Carriage House at The Columbus Foundation.  The facility was truly beautiful and very unique!  I wasn’t sure what to expect, but getting to learn more about the other fellows was a fun experience!  I feel very privileged to be chosen to participate in this fellowship, and was so inspired and impressed by the professionalism of all of the fellows.

After we had discussed details of the fellowship, I headed over to the Short North office of my nonprofit placement, Jazz Arts Group.  I got to sit in on a staff meeting, and already began work on my project, the JazZoo! concert series.  I am looking forward to collaborating with The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium and all of our great guest artists we have coming in for this year’s JazZoo! series.  I was also very excited to hear that the other fellows and staff from The Columbus Foundation will be attending one of the JazZoo! concerts.

I am very honored to be taking part in non-profit work, especially in the arts sector.  Ever since I was small, I have played an instrument and been involved with community and school educational groups.  I have seen firsthand the benefit of nonprofit organizations in the lives of myself, family, and friends.

During our orientation at The Columbus Foundation, President and CEO Doug Kridler talked about the misnomer that is “nonprofit”.   The “non” implies that there is no benefit, no outcome, no “profit” in this field of work.  Often, when I tell people that I want to go into nonprofit work when I graduate from college, they look at me like I’m crazy and ask me why I would want to work for free for the rest of my life, which is another common myth.  They are often shocked when I tell them that hospitals, schools, and even universities are nonprofit organizations, considering the amount of money that those organizations are worth.  These misconceptions about the nonprofit sector couldn’t be further from the truth.  The “profit” of these groups is seen in the lives of individuals and in the vibrancy of the community.  I look forward to my future in this sector and hope to change my community in a positive way through this fellowship.

– Janelle Myers

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