Taylor Saalfeld — My Part in the Difference

December 15, 2010

Taylor Saalfeld

Guest Post by Taylor Saalfeld

Over the past few weeks, I have had quite a bit of time to sit with the question, “Why do you want to work in the nonprofit sector?”  And to be quite honest I have been wrestling with this question and how to state my reasoning more than I would have ever thought.  My struggle is a result of trying to capture my heart and place it in writing.  In my best attempts to do so, the following is what has resulted.

I want to make a difference.  “Well isn’t that the goal of every nonprofit entity operating today?” you may ask and to that I would respond, “yes.”  But my difference is a result of who I am and where I have come from.

On Thanksgiving, I was blessed with the opportunity to sit with my father and grandfather and watch a WWII documentary on the History Channel about the 8th Air Force.  I will never forget the emotions played on my grandfather’s face as he watched this documentary.  As a veteran, B-17 pilot in 8th Air Force, 34th Bomb Group, he was reliving his history and the pride for the difference that he, along with his fellow brotherhood of airmen, made was evident.  This pride I have only seen matched on the face of my father, who battled in a very different war.

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Introducing Student Guest Bloggers

December 1, 2010

Last month I was honored to speak before a class of university students preparing for careers in the nonprofit sector. Our topic of conversation was social media.

We talked about the trends in social media, ways to use social media in a nonprofit organization and the blurring of our personal and professional lives.

We even discussed using social media tools for personal branding. I shared my thoughts on using Facebook to differentiate oneself when launching a career. I challenged the students to use social media to “brand” themselves in an open, transparent and authentic manner. Then, to encourage them to develop their own online presence, I did something I’ve never done.

As an experiment, I invited each student to become a guest blogger here on my personal site. I offered this space to anyone in the class who wanted to share why he or she had chosen to pursue a career in the nonprofit world. A couple of students accepted the invitation. Read the rest of this entry »

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