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Washington and Lee University Big Idea Proposal, 2010-2011

Page history last edited by Melissa Medeiros 10 years ago



Big Idea Title: Service Beyond College


Name of Congress Representatives: Kathryn Marsh-Soloway, Vanessa Nedge, Janielle Rollins, Stephen Wilson


Your Proposal: 

Our Big Idea is to create more opportunities to educate our Bonner Program about the many ways they can incorporate service and civic engagement into their postgraduate plans.  All of us are pursuing various majors and are aiming for careers in a variety of different fields, and it is not always clear how we can continue our passion for service and social justice. Some will pursue careers in the non-profit and NGO realm, but others will continue on in law, medicine, business, government, etc. We are interested in having more programming that focuses on the different paths we can take for civic engagement and continued service, even if our profession is not directly tied into social justice.


We have a variety of ideas to implement our Big Idea:

  • ·         Have a session(s) with our University Career Services to learn about the various resources they have available for applying for internships or jobs; also work with them to develop a workshop on writing effective resume, tips for successful interviews; etc.
  • ·         Have a panel or informal dinner with local non-profit and civic leaders to learn about what they do, why they do it,  and what led them to their current jobs or service commitments;
  • ·         Having more resources and information available about post-graduate opportunities and summer internships. (This information could be easily displayed in the Volunteer Resources Room located in our University’s Commons, so that other students outside of Bonner can learn about the opportunities.)
  • ·         Have a session/panel with Bonner alumni to learn about what they are now doing and how they are continuing their service and civic engagement
  • ·         Have a group of Bonners develop a Bonner Video that explores the variety ways Bonners can stay involved with service and civic engagement – spotlighting Bonner alumni, local civic leaders, etc.; this would be a great resources for our program to have
  • ·         Session with some recent graduates who have started their own non-profits (A W&L professor’s daughter started an internationally-focused non-profit while she was a sophomore in college, and she comes back to the area often; there are a couple other grads who come back occasionally)


Our Program’s newly formed Bonner Leadership Team will play a big role in working with our Bonner Coordinator to develop these sessions. At our first Bonner meeting this fall, most of our group said they were interested in having opportunities like this available, and we think there will be a lot of support in moving this forward. While at Bonner Congress we hope to talk with other students to learn what other schools are doing in this area. We are hoping to have each of the above sessions over the course of this school year. We also hope that this will be a continuing initiative that does not end after this year. 


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