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by Anne Kotleba, Program Coordinator, Nonprofit Leadership Alliance
Just days after we rang in the new year, a storm blew through Denver, Colorado. While the flakes fell outside, inside there was a flurry of ideas, conversation, and learning at the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance's Alliance Management Institute (AMI). Twenty-two students from the ASU Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Student Association joined hundreds of the brightest future nonprofit professionals from 33 campuses across the country. Our students engaged in three days of workshops and brainstorming sessions across a wide variety of topics, including: leveraging social entrepreneurship, organizing grassroots social movements, and building strategic partnerships.
One particularly proud moment for the ASU delegation was cheering for junior Lindsay Zapata as she presented her Undergraduate Best Practices poster, “A Learning Campaign.” Lindsay’s poster represented an in-depth look at the $37,000 fundraising campaign that brought the entire ASU delegation to the Institute and was well received by the audience.
Another highlight was hearing ASU alum Bill Roske present on the topic of Human Centered Design. Not only did he provide a great example for our students of what the future might look like for an NLA graduate, he also showed ingenuity and innovation by jumping in and organizing an alternative plan when the case studies were snowed in on the last day.
Our students did a tremendous job of being leaders and carrying themselves with pride. From the first day of class in September, they have stepped up to every challenge and showed true dedication to the organization and to a better nonprofit sector. I am so grateful to the over 150 people who donated to get us to Denver, especially those who continuously support our students each year. While I am already looking forward to next year’s AMI campaign, there will always be a place in my heart for this 2017 group. We have come a long way together and I am thrilled to see where this experience will take them!