The Nonprofit Leadership Alliance is proud to introduce the five students taking part in its inaugural Externship Program, a program designed to nurture and empower the next generation of nonprofit leaders. This program stands as a testament to NLA’s commitment to fostering excellence in the nonprofit sector by providing opportunities for its Certified Nonprofit Professional (CNP) students on their partnered campuses. 

These five outstanding college students have been chosen due to their dedication, academic prowess, and passion for creating positive change. 

Shaping the Present

While often hailed as the future, these college students are not waiting for tomorrow to make a difference – they are changing the nonprofit sector today. Their participation in the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance’s Externship Program challenges the notion that their contributions lie solely in the future. Instead, they are actively shaping the present landscape through their innovative ideas, relentless dedication, and unwavering commitment to creating immediate, tangible impact. 

These individuals, handpicked by their Campus Directors for their passion and potential, are not simply preparing to lead—they are leading. Their involvement demonstrates their readiness to tackle today’s challenges. They’re making a big impact in the nonprofit sector, inspiring change and encouraging others to join in creating a better world right now. 

Shelby Cochran, South Dakota State University, Brookings, South Dakota 

Ellie Heerema, Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana 

Abbey Murphy, Salisbury University, Salisbury, Maryland 

Aubri O’Connor, The Catholic University of America, Columbus School of Law, Washington DC 

KiLee Thompson, University of Houston, League City, Texas 

Nonprofit Externship Program Selects 5 Promising CNP Students


Selection Criteria

The Nonprofit Leadership Alliance Externship Program is exclusively available to CNP students enrolled at NLA-affiliated campuses. To be considered for this prestigious opportunity, candidates must be nominated by their campus director, and commit to contributing 20 hours of volunteerism time over the school year, fostering a spirit of service and community engagement. 

Nonprofit Leadership Alliance's Nonprofit Externship program

Participants in this program can anticipate a multifaceted experience, including: 

  • Real-World Immersion: Hands-on involvement in impactful projects and initiatives. 
  • Direct Engagement: Interacting closely with the Nonprofit Leadership Alliance team. 
  • Mentorship Opportunities: Guidance from seasoned professionals within the nonprofit sector. 
  • Executive Team Exposure: Insights from top-tier leaders, providing an unparalleled learning experience. 
  • Peer Networking: Opportunities to connect and collaborate with fellow professionals. 
  • Educational Sessions: Access to specialized training and educational resources. 

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