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"I wish I could do it again" Community Engagement Fellowship Experience

Curious about what it’s like to be a Community Engagement Fellow? Read some of the experiences from our past Fellows and then consider applying to be part of our 2015 cohort.

Katherine was our Community Engagement Fellow in our last cohort and now works at a nonprofit in the Triangle.

Katherine was one of our Community Engagement Fellows in our last cohort and now works at a nonprofit in the Triangle.

In my time as a Community Engagement Fellow, I gained a lot of skills, had unique opportunities, and learned several things that have been useful in my new position at a local, Triangle nonprofit agency. The biggest skills I gained were public speaking and story-telling.  The orientation session on public speaking was excellent. Some of the tools shared with us were invaluable, including: tips for remembering parts of a story, the structure of a story, as well as the the feedback from staff on our speaking skills. A key takeaway for me was learning to speak at a variety of events, both large and small, and to a variety of audiences – from corporate donors to people in retail to teachers and fellow nonprofit colleagues.  These are all skills that I’ve continued to refine since my time at UWGT, especially the lessons from the speaking engagements. This was HUGE for me – I now have the confidence to speak to any type of group and I still use the structure that UWGT gave us during orientation when I think about giving a speech!

Through my fellowship, I was given the opportunity to meet so many professionals from an array of backgrounds and across sectors – again, during my time there I worked with fellow nonprofits, schools, government entities, corporations, and even some retail entities.  I was given the opportunity to meet people from those sectors and I still run into people that I met during my time at UWGT.  The networking was beneficial both in making community connections and in refining my networking skills. The program also gave me an opportunity to refine my customer service and sales skills.

My current job in development and communications is heavily focused on engaging others through the organization’s mission and this is accomplished, in part, through storytelling. Again, my storytelling skills were greatly improved during the UWGT program.  I would also say that my time management skills were improved while at UWGT. Although we had supervisors, I liked that the position involved a good deal of autonomy in scheduling meetings and presentations.  I think that this fostered a sense of confidence and responsibility in the program participants, creating an environment where they really cared about UWGT and the mission.

Lastly, my communication skills improved. Not only am I better equipped to communicate with supervisors, fellow employees, as well as professionals throughout the community, but I also learned a lot about social media best practices and marketing.  This has come in handy because part of my current job responsibilities is managing our social media and print collateral.

If you want to participate in a meaningful fellowship, where you’re gaining many new skills, and are making a difference in the community, then you should definitely apply for the Community Engagement fellowship.  I really enjoyed this program and wish I could do it again!


The fellowship is held at United Way of the Greater Triangle’s office in Morrisville, NC. As a fellow you will have the opportunity to travel and build relationships across the four county region we serve: Durham, Johnston, Orange, and Wake counties. For 2015 we will only be selecting 5 fellows.  Fellows must be available and participate in the mandatory trainings, July 8-10, and July 13-14. The fellowship requires a 37.5 hour Monday-Friday workweek. The 2015 Fellowship starts July 8 and ends November 20, 2015.  Fellows are expected to complete their entire term.  Fellows receive $12/hour during this fellowship.

Applications Open: Now
Applications Due: May 29, 2015
Round 1 Interviews: Week of June 1
Round 2 Interviews: Week of June 15
Mandatory Training: July 8-10, July 13-14
Program Start: July 8
Program End: November 20

How to Apply: Please send your cover letter, résumé and completed application to Mr. Stéphane Daniel by Friday, May 29, 2015 with the subject “UWGT Community Engagement Fellow Application.

Click here for a full description of the Community Fellowship

Click here to apply for a Community Fellowship