“Giving to people is what makes me feel alive”

Thursday, August 11, 2016


Contributor: Brooklyn Massey, Marketing and Communications Intern at United Way Fox Cities
My name is Brooklyn Massey and I am a Recreation Management student at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. “What are you going to do with that?” is the typical response I receive after I tell people about my academic career.

I do not know exactly where my major is going to take me, but I do know I want to pursue a career in nonprofits. This summer, I was fortunate enough to be a Marketing & Communications intern at United Way Fox Cities.

My interest in United Way Fox Cities started in high school when a mentor of mine encouraged me to check out United Way Fox Cities Youth Board. Youth Board is a way for sophomore, junior, and senior high school students to become more involved and engaged in their school and community through United Way Fox Cities. I served on Youth Board for two years and loved it. So, when it came time to pursue an internship I knew just where I wanted to be.

For the three months I have been at United Way Fox Cities, I’ve had the opportunity to contribute to several projects and share my questions and ideas. I have gained insight into what United Way accomplishes in our community and have enjoyed being a part of this organization’s striving mission to “build a stronger, more caring community for everyone.”

One of my favorite books, Tuesday’s With Morrie, explains perfectly why my passion and determination lies in the field of volunteer coordination and nonprofit development. It says, “But giving to people is what makes me feel alive. Not my car or my house. Not what I look like in the mirror. When I give my time, when I can make someone smile after they were feeling sad, it’s as close to healthy as I ever feel.”

This internship has reassured me I am on the right track to pursue my interests and goals. I’d encourage anyone who is looking to be a dedicated volunteer for an impactful nonprofit to check out United Way Fox Cities.