Blog, Networking, Professional

Young Nonprofit Professional Network

A lot of people are transitioning from the for-profit world into the non-profit world in order to find more meaning in their work. Oftentimes, people aren’t sure how to reposition themselves when their entire drive has been money, money, money thus far. Just like for-profits, non-profits look for results. And just like for-profits, non-profits are organizations and face the same day-to-day challenges. Your skills and strengths are equally relevant.

An organization that I support for its tremendous efforts to help people advance their careers in the non-profit world is the Young Nonprofit Professional Network. I’m closest to the New York chapter, but they are all over and continuing to grow. Learn more below and check out their website at for upcoming events, job openings, and their newsletter.


The Young Nonprofit Professionals Network of New York City (YNPN-NYC) supports the professional development of the next generation of nonprofit leaders by providing opportunities for skill-building, information sharing, and networking.

Founded in 2002, the YNPN-NYC is a regional association that engages and supports its members’ professional and leadership development. We believe that its members’ growth and development can play a critical role in the success of the nonprofit community, and promotes this important work by:

  • Providing educational workshops, and other personal and professional resources that promote the career development of its members
  • Offering networking opportunities and social events to encourage information sharing and relationships among its members
  • Creating a mentoring program to encourage and cultivate future nonprofit leaders

For more information, please go to

Blog, Graduate, Professional

Understand Your Options: Online Education as a Stepping Stone for Career Change and/or Advancement

A Q&A between Jullien Gordon and the experts at Pounding the Pavement

Jullien: Who is the typical online student?

PtP: According to most recent data from the National Center for Education Statistics, over 12.2 million students were engaged in some form of distance learning in 2006-7. Many associate online schooling with continuing education for graduate or professional programs, however, the seventh annual Sloan Consortium Survey of Online Learning indicated that 82% of online students were studying at the undergraduate level in 2008 and as many as 25% of traditional college students were taking at least one online course.

These numbers indicate that the typical online student is someone who is drawn to the flexibility that online courses afford, regardless of their current education level or life situation.

Jullien: What is the typical online student looking for when he or she enrolls?

PtP: In this competitive economy, the demand for college-educated workers is higher than ever. Many people are flocking to get those degrees, in hopes that the credentials will later earn them higher paying and/or more flexible jobs. However, many people do not have the flexibility to sit in a classroom all day. Online learning appeals to those with children and those who can’t afford to ditch their day job because it offers the opportunity to pursue an education at your own pace, on your own time from the comfort of one’s home or favorite coffee shop.

Jullien: What are the hottest online degrees today?

PtP: According to U.S. News & World Report, the most popular online degrees today are business degrees, nursing programs, and criminal justice programs. These many jobs in these sectors have shown strong growth. For those interested in researching employment trends to ensure they’re preparing for a degree in an in-demand field, the Bureau of Labor Statistics is always a great resource.

Jullien: What new trends and innovations do you see in today’s online education from the student, teaching, and technology perspectives?

PtP: The proliferation of online learning continues to bring with it many new modes of transmitting information. In order to appeal to the whole spectrum of learning styles, many schools offer a blended or hybrid courses, composed of some face-to-face interaction and some of the course material is delivered online. Course formats (including video lectures, chatrooms, forums, and more) are continually evolving as access to new technology and software development continues to improve. Downloadable e-textbooks are now big at many schools.

Jullien: What is the best way to position an online degree when job searching and interviewing against candidates with offline degrees?

PtP: More and more employers are beginning to recognize the value of an online degree and respect the dedication and discipline it takes to complete coursework online. However, not all online programs are respectable and “diploma mill” scams are out there. For this reason, it is imperative to ensure the validity of your program before you enroll. Make sure you understand the importance of accreditation.

If you’re interviewing with a hiring manager who seems skeptical about the integrity of your online education, make sure you’re prepared to demonstrate your high standards and prove you did your homework and picked a reputable, accredited program. If you’re interested, this article offers further insight into other common reservations about online degrees, and how to discuss them with prospective employers.

Check the Pounding the Pavement blog for more career-oriented insights. And for guidance on online schools or how to earn your high school diploma at home, be sure to visit Guide to Career Education.

Blog, Professional

What kind of employee are you?

Companies have three resources

  1. Human Resources
  2. Capital Resources
  3. Physical Resources

Every day their greatest resource walks out of the door—you, their employees. You are the one who breath life into the company. Without you (CEO to janitor), the company would suffocate. Unfortunately, many companies don’t see it that way and they are starting to treat their human resources like physical resources as if they are just part of a machine. Expendable. Replaceable. Disposable.

Though we’ve advanced beyond the assembly line technologically, management still treats employees like they’re in a Ford factory. Only true leadership (not to be mistaken as synonymous with management) can bring out the best in it’s employees. Until then, ask yourself, “What kind of employee am I?”

Every object below is replaceable, just like many employees who don’t create unique value. If you happen feel like one of them, you need to reconsider WHAT you do for work, WHY you work, and WHERE you work.

The Water Cooler

You start off full at the beginning of day but throughout the office drinks your life blood dry and by the end of the day you’re empty. You go home, rest, and replenish, only to do it all over again the next day.

The Keyboard

They’re always pushing your buttons. Without even knocking they ENTER. They only give you SPACE every once and while. They dump all of their crap on you—coffee, juice, red bull. You wish they would keep their CAPS LOCKED. They are so COMMANDing and CONTROLing! F1, F2, F. You! You used to get mad, but now you just go NUM. You’re thinking it’s either time to SHIFT desk or to ESCAPE.

The Refrigerator

Everybody gives you last night’s leftovers. There is old stuff that you’ve been procrastinating on that is starting to decay because you don’t really want it. Even after they give it to you, they still put their name on it so that they can take credit for it later.

The Printer

You get work sent your way relentlessly…until you break down. That’s the only time people really notice you and even then they don’t stop to help. They get mad at you instead of realizing that they were the cause of your break down and stress! If you’re big enough they’ll even kick you and go in your drawers looking for stuff. And when people see that you’re empty, they only fill you up when they need something from you.

The Paper Stack

You started off with a clean slate, but then organization left its imprint on you. Half of the time you’re a waste, 30% of the time you are recycling old work, and 20% of the time you actually feel useful. They rarely color your world—most of the time it’s black and white. Everyone uses computers and smart phone now, so you’re not even noteworthy anymore.

The Stapler

They will try to put you through anything. They don’t care. Through thick and thin, right? The moment you’re in a jam, they look for the paperclip they should have used in the first place. You keep everything together, even when everyone else isn’t together. Sometime they chain you next to the printer because so many people take you for granted.

The Post It

They only use you in sticky situations. They give you long to do lists and then ball you up and throw you away like a deflated basketball when the list is done. Most of the time, they scribble confusing instructions to you that aren’t clear and actionable. When that happens, the idea never becomes real and you just hang around. When they see you haven’t moved, they stare you in the face and take out their inner frustration on you and rip you in half.

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