Nonprofit Board Residency for Students

pilotprogramThe Nonprofit Board Residency program is a .5 credit course that provides an opportunity for Wesleyan students to learn about the nonprofit sector and work closely with a local Nonprofit Board of Directors.  Students will attend board meetings and actively participate in a committee of the board while completing a project identified by the organization. Students will also meet regularly on campus with the instructor, Cathy Lechowicz, Director of the Center for Community Partnerships, for readings and discussions about the nonprofit sector, Boards of Directors, reflections on the experience and more.  Students will receive .5 credits per semester through CSPL280 and CSPL281.  This course is POI and students must be willing to commit to the entire year.

In the Spring 2016, the pilot Nonprofit Board Residency program launched with five local partner organization; the Buttonwood Tree, the Middlesex Historical Society, Middlesex United Way, the Community Foundation of Middlesex County, and Middlesex Habitat for Humanity. Five students, Arpita Vora ’16, Liza Bayless ’16, Bria Grant ’17, Aidan Martinez ’17 and Ben Romero ’16, sat on their boards as non-voting members. 

Once students apply, you will be matched with a local organization.

Tentative timeline:

April 12th – Student Applications Due – student application

May 1st – Organization Applications Due organization application

Mid-April – Students selected for the course

Mid-May – Organizational Matches Made

Summer – Students may be in touch with organizations about project ideas (not mandatory)
September – Course meetings begin – class will meet regularly at the beginning of the semester and less frequently as the board engagement increases (schedule will be provided at the first class meeting)
October – Start attending board meetings; Kickoff Event on campus with organizations and students
November – Attend board meeting, start working on project
December – Attend board meeting, instructor will check in wtih organizations
January – Attend board meeting
February – Attend board meeting
March – Attend board meeting
April – Attend board meeting
May –  Final meeting and closing event where students present their individual projects


Jennifer Roach is the Civic Engagement Fellow in Allbritton for the academic year 2015-2016. She is a recent Wesleyan alumni, class of 2014. Since graduating, she has moved to Hartford to continue developing Summer of Solutions Hartford, an urban farming internship program she worked on during her time at Wesleyan.