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Wishing Well Blog

Jan 22, 2014

Once I Started, I Couldn't Stop: From Intern to Staff

Liz (top right) at Chi Omega's annual event Make A Dish for Make-A-Wish
I first got involved with Make-A-Wish when I joined my sorority, Chi Omega, at the University of Pittsburgh. Make-A-Wish is our national philanthropy, and after learning more about the organization I knew I wanted to do something more – but the question remained: what could I do and how? I soon found out that a couple of my older sisters were interns at the Pittsburgh office, and there was my answer.

In the fall of 2012, I spent the first semester of my junior year interning with the Marketing and Communications team.  I experienced a lot of “firsts” during those four months.  I wrote my first wish story and my first ever press release.  I remember how excited I was when I saw one of my very own wish stories in a newsletter publication, or when a reporter used information from a release for an article about one of our wish children.  Most of all, I still love looking back upon the first time I stepped foot onto the 37th floor of the Gulf Tower, the Make-A-Wish office.  That first day everything just felt right – I knew I wanted to stay (forever, if possible).  And quite literally, they haven’t been able to get rid of me yet.

The following spring – April 1st to be exact (another first!) – I received an email from Ann, our Chief Operating Officer, while I was driving back to Pittsburgh from a weekend at home.  Simply seeing the name “Ann Hohn” forced me to immediately pull over at the next gas station because I was way too excited to wait and read what was inside.  Before I knew it, I found myself back on the 37th floor, this time getting a taste of the inner workings of the wish team and all that goes into the planning of a wish from start to finish.  I worked on the wish team for about a month while they needed some extra help, and then returned home for the summer. 

Towards the end of the summer, I was returning from studying abroad in Spain only to find yet another email from the domain.  I think you might be able to guess what happened next, but I’ll fill you in anyway.  By fall 2013, I started my second semester interning with the Marketing and Communications team, where I gained even more invaluable experience in this field.  I guess I really wasn’t kidding when I said I wanted to stay forever.

Most importantly, though, when reflecting on the past year, I realize how lucky I am to have learned so much not only about this profession and the nonprofit sector, but also about how important and rewarding it is to work in a positive environment with other people who truly love and care about their jobs.  It has only been two weeks since I started as the part-time Communications Assistant and I am thrilled to be a part of such a meaningful organization like Make-A-Wish.  

About this Blog

This blog brings Make-A-Wish Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia to you -- sharing first-person stories of the Make-A-Wish experience and the impact of a wish from the perspectives of wish families, volunteers and staff. This blog highlights wishes come true and the special people in Pennsylvania and West Virginia that help create life-changing experiences for every eligible child.

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Make-A-Wish® Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Inc.
The Gulf Tower
707 Grant Street, 37th Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15219-1938
(412) 471-9474
Toll Free (800) 676-9474
Make-A-Wish® Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Southern West Virginia Office
888 Oakwood Rd
Oakwood Center, Suite 330
Charleston, WV 25314
(304) 342-9474
Toll Free (800) 664-9474
Make-A-Wish® Greater Pennsylvania and West Virginia, Northern West Virginia Office
913 Canyon Road
Morgantown, WV 26508
(304) 292-5600
Toll Free (888) 808-9474