PPS After Guilford
Check out some of the awesome ways that Guilford students are engaging in Principled Problem Solving after they graduate.
Mindy Mock ’05: During my last semester at Guilford, I had the opportunity for an internship at Piedmont Land Conservancy, the local non-profit land trust that works to permanently protect the special places in our Piedmont region – wildlife habitat, rivers and streams, farm land, culturally and historically significant sites, and urban green spaces. I began working there first in education and outreach, and later branched more into working with landowners who wish to protect their land in perpetuity. This internship led into a full-time position, and I feel very fortunate to be able to work with this wonderful organization that not only gives me the opportunity to meet interesting landowners and volunteers and to visit some of the most beautiful places in our area, but to have a job in which I know I am doing something that will benefit people for generations to come.
Marissa Dungan ’12: Being a part of the PPS scholars program gave me the ability to look at dilemmas as problems waiting to be solved! My current plans involve working for D.C. Central Kitchen, an organization that collects 2-3 tons of extra food each day and converts it into meals, which are then distributed throughout D.C. I will be part of AVODAH: The Jewish Corps, a year long program that focuses on the connection between Judaism and social activism. My current plans are important to me because I am being given the opportunity to apply the knowledge I learned at Guilford to direct service action. D.C. Central Kitchen’s goal of waste reduction and AVOADAH’s mission to connect Jewish values to social activism will enable me to carry my PPS framework of using Guilford’s core values to solve problems into my next endeavor.
Markas Brunson ’10: I can say without a doubt that without PPS discovering my vocation would probably not have happened. The networking and resources that the instructors were able to provide me were priceless because without the internship opportunities they provided I would not have had the chance to work with non-profit organizations like Greensboro Housing Coalition and Children’s Homes Society of North Carolina. I feel prepared to take on any challenges and obstacles life will throw my way because of my experience as a Principled Problem Solving Scholar. After two years as the Wise Guys Coordinator for CAPP (Center for Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention), this will be my first year attending the Kent School of Social Work at the University of Louisville to pursue a Masters in Social Work. Being a Principled Problem Solver is a part of my identity and I am grateful to have attended Guilford College despite coming originally just to play collegiate football.
Christina Schoffner ’12: Even after completing the PPS program, I was inspired to continue volunteering at organizations that work towards progressive social change. I really loved how Guilford’s PPS program helped ignite my passion for being a leader in my community. I am further inspired to continue helping others and encouraging others to do the same. I recognize that the impact of my current choices and decisions will have an even greater impact on people and my community down the road. I have always had a passion for serving others and I have chosen to help others through a career in nursing. After graduation I began working with a home health agency as a staffing coordinator and nursing assistant. However, I am currently making the necessary preparations to eventually become a nurse practitioner.
Courtney Mandeville ’12: PPS provided a critical space in my life to experiment with new ideas, allowed my leadership to unfold, calibrate my moral compass and push the boundaries of my critical thinking. PPS was not just about my academic endeavors at Guilford but about my development as a global citizen who is passionate about principled social change. PPS gave me the chance to turn thoughts and words into action. Currently, I am in Alaska working for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service as part of a crew that is conducting landscape level, ecological research in the Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge.
Claire Massagee ’12: PPS is the reason I got my first internship at the Greensboro Housing Coalition, the reason I got 4 more internships in political offices, the reason I landed a job before graduation, and the reason I have my current job. And I’m being really serious. Jobs are hard. Real responsibilities are hard. Balancing work and life are hard. I learned all that before I graduated and potential employers recognized that I was prepared for a real job. So the impact PPS has had on me is broad and ongoing. I am currently working for the North Carolina Victory Campaign which encompasses all republican campaigns across the state. So I work for Romney, McCrory, and all other down ballot republican candidates in NC. I would want people to know that if they came to Guilford because they admired its core values, they should get involved with PPS, because I believe PPS lives and breathes those values.
Donna Newton ’89: After a 30 year for profit corporate career, I have been working in the nonprofit sector for the past 10 years. I serve as the Director for the Guilford Nonprofit Consortium, and serve a number of other nonprofit roles in Guilford County as the Building Stronger Neighborhoods Liaison, and the Advisor to the Greensboro Neighborhood Congress. In addition, I serve in volunteer roles on numerous nonprofit boards and committees throughout the city. No one is more surprised about this than me. As a corporate executive, I had never imagined myself in the nonprofit sector. However, I can say that it’s a perfect match for me. I’m so grateful to have such meaningful work in the company of wonderful people who care about others. I believe now that my experience at Guilford was a precursor to this work, although I didn’t know it at the time I was finishing school. Certainly, the values displayed in the culture of Guilford are part and parcel to the work I’m privileged to do today.
Malcolm Kenton ’08: I am helping to coordinate and organize a national advocacy organization working to modernize and expand the US passenger train network as a key component of a balanced transportation system providing safe, reliable, convenient, affordable and sustainable mobility for the entire nation. This will require greater and more consistent public investment, on a par with that which highways and aviation have enjoyed for decades. lt’s certainly an uphill battle to convince elected officials of the need and the public’s demand for this when there are constant calls to reduce the deficit and there are so many other spending priorities. The communications, public engagement and consensus-building skills I developed at Guilford have proven indispensible in my work to increase awareness, build coalitions, and cultivate grassroots support for the next generation of travel–one that will help us maintain a high quality of life in spite of the population, energy, resource and climate challenges ahead.