When Temple alumna Benae Mosby began searching for a career, she didn’t know an opportunity would be sent to her by e-mail.
“During senior year, I was trying to figure out what to do after graduation,” Mosby said. “An e-mail was sent to me about the program.”
After graduation, Mosby was offered a post-graduate fellowship with Philly Fellows, a nonprofit organization that offers graduates of colleges and universities in the Philadelphia region opportunities to increase community involvement and economic growth in the city. Fellows can choose among a variety of positions in the city’s cultural, educational and social services agencies.
Four Temple students from the Class of 2008 were given this opportunity.
“I thought it was an interesting program, and I wanted to do more work with nonprofit organizations,” Mosby said.
Mosby works as a public relations associate for Women Against Abuse, one of the nation’s largest domestic violence programs that assists battered women and their children. WAA operates a shelter in Philadelphia and hosts seminars about domestic violence.
Philly Fellows also encourages recent graduates to remain in Philadelphia.
“Instead of college students leaving Philadelphia for work, they can be a part of Philly Fellows. [It] provides us with a place to live and transportation to get around in the city,” Mosby said.
Though fellows aren’t paid a lot of money, there are many opportunities to help residents in the city’s communities.
“You’ll learn to live on little money, but it will be fine,” Mosby said.
Fellow and Temple alumna Tanequa Neale said she always wanted to work for nonprofit organizations.
“Before working for Philly Fellows, I used to work for a nonprofit organization called Jump Start,” Neale said. “I knew that I wanted to work administratively for a nonprofit organization in education.”
Now, Neale is the outreach coordinator for the White-Williams Scholars, an organization that works to support and inspire city’s students from low-income households.
“My position consists of media outreach to local newspapers, television channels and radio stations,” Neale said. “Their job is to reach out to alumni of White-Williams Scholars who are currently working in the Philadelphia area.”
Mosby and Neale said they are comfortable with the work they do. Mosby, who studied journalism, said she still uses skills from her major at Philly Fellows.
“I still use my writing skills when I write news letters for the organization and the MySpace page they have,” Mosby said.
Neale said this opportunity is a transition into the real world.
“I wasn’t skeptical about taking a job that didn’t relate to English,” said Neale, who was an English major. “I knew that I didn’t want to be an English teacher right away.”
Both Mosby and Neale said they are learning a lot about Philadelphia and how to make it a better place.
“Philly Fellows taught me how I can handle responsibilities,” Mosby said.
Shannon Phillips can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.