NPF Speaker: Cyber Fundraising and Cross Sector Partnerships

October 9, 2014

photoThe 2014 Nonprofit Fellows had yet another great speaker.  This week in Professor Twila Johnson’s NCLC 441: Principles of Fundraising class,  Kate Olsen, formerly of “Network for Good” shared her experiences and some excellent resources.  Topics included cyber fundraising, payment processing and driving traffic.  She now works with a communications consulting firm, and discussed partnerships, including those that cross the corporate and non-profit sector as the emerging “solution economy.”  


October 1, 2014

Hannah blog photot

Guest Blogger from Mason’s 2014 Nonprofit Fellows program:

On Saturday, September 20, 2014, actress and goodwill ambassador for U.N. Women, Emma Watson, appeared before the United Nations to discuss a new campaign called “HeforShe.”  The goal of this campaign is to involve men actively in the effort to end violence against women.   Proponents of the effort to reduce violence against women often acknowledge what women should do to prevent or avoid it, but men have as important a role to play in the effort. During her presentation, Watson asked her audience, “How can we affect change in the world when only half of it is invited or feel [sic] welcome to participate in the conversation?  Men — I would like to take this opportunity to extend your formal invitation.  Gender equality is your issue, too.”

Many critics of Watson’s presentation assumed that she was ideologically feminist, and feminism is too often dismissed as being tantamount to “man-hating.”  This assumption is false.  The definition of the word actually means the advocacy of women’s rights on the grounds of political, social, and economic equality to men.

When I attended the United States Coast Guard Academy, a predominantly male environment, I was subject to unfair, and even at times misogynistic, treatment, because I was among a tiny minority of females enrolled at the academy.  I did not receive the same opportunities as male cadets; the administration, professors, staff, and fellow male students talked down to me; I was harassed, yelled at, and disrespected, often because my male colleagues did not think that women should serve in the armed forces.  In part, for this reason, I left the academy.

Women cannot end violence against women alone.  Men must participate in the effort.  They must recognize that in ceasing to limit women, they will empower fellow citizens, and ultimately their country.

Blogger:  Hannah is a senior at George Mason University with drive and blonde ambition.

The People’s Climate March: Hypocrisy Accusations

September 25, 2014




I have been fascinated by an on-going social media discussion related to the piles of litter left by the 400,000 people who attended the People’s Climate March in New York last Sunday.


 Several photos available from a local NYC paper here.





A brief summary of what I’ve seen posted on a variety of social media outlets:

  • The sheer amount of litter on the streets is an embarrassment, and a symbol of the hypocrisy of these environmental activists.
  • There were no garbage cans on the route, a safety measure, and 400,000 people in addition to the usual New Yorkers on the street.
  • Photos of the garbage clearly contain products from the kinds of multi-national corporations the march was protesting against.
  • This event was a huge success, the litter is not the point.
  • Marches like this do not accomplish anything.
  • Marches like this are a crucial aspect of a participative democracy

I’d be interested to hear from Mason students who have participated in marches, and from those who intentionally do not.  What do marches accomplish?  If their point is largely to be symbolic of the people’s will, what other symbols do their organizers need to attend to?  Is it possible for the organizers of an event like this to control the messages and symbols that emerge? What is your responsibility as a participant?


Challenging? Yes. Worth it? Definitely.

February 18, 2014


by Annette Dipert

My semester as a nonprofit fellow was both the most difficult and most rewarding semester of my Mason career. The internship, courses, professors, and people all combined into what turned out to be a life-changing experience.

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In Being a Nonprofit Fellow

January 30, 2014


by Najeeba (Najee) Gootee

       Saying I learned a lot in my short semester as a nonprofit fellow would be an understatement. It was one of those experiences where I knew I was learning, obviously because it’s school, but it wasn’t until the very end that I reflected upon the last few months and was really aware of just how much I, and we, had accomplished. Being in a learning setting with just 15 students and 3 very hands-on professors makes for the most ideal learning environment I could ask for. I made spectacular friends along the way who were able to relate in every little assignment and reading we had. There was always someone to sit with, talk with, eat with, or study with and even better, to compare internship experiences with. We learned how to think and discuss as leaders, how to act in a nonprofit workplace, and how to create social innovation in our community. We even had some rockin’ field trips! This just barely scratches the surface about how amazing my semester was but I know I could not have had a better opportunity to solidify my decision to enter the nonprofit world than by doing this program.