By Kelsie Fields
It’s so exciting to look back on where we all started ten weeks ago. Meeting with everyone this morning and hearing about all the amazing successes our cohort has had at their various organizations. To cap off this amazing summer, I want to share just a few practical and universal lessons I learned from my fellowship at the Westerville Symphony.
1. Just ask! I learned so much from my supervisor, Sean Brewster, but most importantly, I learned to just ask for things. We were able to secure many donations and swag items for our runners by simply asking. We were able to get all of our t-shirts sponsored by just asking. It seems crazy, but it works.
2. Another lesson I learned is the importance of adapting your programming to your audience. During the fall and spring, we host symphonic performances that feature excellent musicians and music selections, but for some people, these concerts have barriers. We want everyone to experience the magic of classical music in their own way, and to do this, you have to get creative. During the summer, we host two free concerts that are outside, and we also have a programmed targeted at pre-schoolers. These programs allow us to think outside of the box and ultimately reach more people with music!
3. Thirdly, I learned the importance of self-awareness and the usefulness of understanding your strengths. Knowing how you work best and the steps you typically take to solve a problem can be very useful when working with a small team. I learned to communicate more effectively about how I work and the strengths I bring to the table, and this skill will be useful to me in my career.
4. Lastly, I learned more about this wonderful city. Columbus has no equal in the way it makes me feel at home. Being a part of such a local, community-minded organization was inspiring and altogether fun.
Thank you to my fellow fellows, The Columbus Foundation, and to Sean and the Westerville Symphony for a fantastic summer. Long live the spirit of Columbus!