Agnes Bisselle ’20 interned at the Cleveland Foundation with the non-profit New Directions group during the summer. A media and society major with an entrepreneurial studies minor, Bisselle focused on fundraising, marketing, public relations and event planning with the organization.
A relatively new resident to Cleveland, Bisselle was looking for an opportunity to embed herself in the community while also doing non-profit work that helps others. Cleveland Foundation, established in 1914, is one of world’s first community foundations. Bisselle eagerly researched opportunities to aid the foundation in their mission of improving the lives of residents in Cuyahoga, Lake and Geauga counties. Through New Directions, the foundation aids people struggling with substance abuse and mental health challenges, working to create an affordable path toward treatment. Bisselle worked in their development office and “created a marketing plan, wrote press releases, and assisted in the planning of their biggest fundraiser.”
The group of 20 interns also met weekly at the Cleveland Foundation. There they “participated in civic immersion sessions focusing on networking and community involvement opportunities,” which created a group of people who shared a similar passion. Through the internship, she was able to see firsthand how nonprofits “have a positive and powerful impact” while functioning with limited resources.
“This internship helped me grow personally by emphasizing the importance of building authentic relationships,” Bisselle says. “Being personable and communicating effectively are extremely important skills” that she uses in her work on campus as a Career Assistant in the Salisbury Center for Career, Professional and Experiential Education and as a member of the club ice hockey and club lacrosse teams.
Although she’s still figuring it out, Bisselle says that after graduation she wants “to continue to work in the marketing and communications field at nonprofits” and is “passionate about being involved in purposeful and meaningful organizations.”