Intern Spotlight – Diana OrtizJune 1, 2021
Board Governance SeriesJuly 6, 2021
Katelyn participated in the Internship Program in the Fall of 2018 , interning with the DeKalb County Community Mental Health Board. At NIU, she double majored in Psychology and Nonprofit & NGO Studies while minoring in Sociology. Her internship helped her connect the classroom to professional experiences and after college she began her career with a nonprofit organization based in Chicago.
Q: What was the biggest benefit and/or the best part of your internship experience?
Katelyn: The biggest benefits of my internship experience at the DeKalb County Community Mental Health Board were the connections I made and the first hand experience of working in the nonprofit world. I was able to utilize the skills I had learned throughout my coursework leading up to the internship. It felt like I was finally in the driver’s seat, taking control of the skills I had learned and implementing them.
Q: In your opinion, why should students pursue internship opportunities?
Katelyn: Students should pursue internship opportunities because you never know what it could lead to. Before my internship, I was unsure of where my passion was in the nonprofit world. Through my internship I was able to learn what I did/didn’t like. It made a big impact on where I saw myself in the nonprofit landscape. Internship opportunities are also a great place to network and make connections.
Q: What are you up to now?
Katelyn: I’m currently employed at the nonprofit organization, Chicago Run, where I work on the program team. We empower young people from pre-K through high school with equitable access to inclusive running and physical activity programs.
Q: Please share any additional comments you have about your internship experience.
Katelyn: Thank you, Roberts Family Foundation! This Internship Program was the highlight of my college career and I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunities it provided me.
The Internship Program is a collaboration between the DeKalb County Nonprofit Partnership, the Center for Nonprofit Studies, and Career Services at Northern Illinois University, supported by the Douglas C. and Lynn M. Roberts Family Foundation.