Net Impact at Duquesne: Enhancing the Duquesne experience

By: Blair Schoenborn

Net Impact Mission Statement: to mobilize a new generation to use their careers to drive transformational change in their workplace and the world.

The sMBA cohort makes up the membership of duquesne university’s graduate chapter of net impact. Membership with Net Impact provides a number of great resources that benefit students and working professionals alike. The primary perk is access to an expansive network of like-minded, passionate individuals (many of whom are looking to hire Net Impact members specifically) committed to driving change in their schools and careers. Net Impact also hosts a jobs board that keeps members informed of job postings in fields directly or indirectly related to sustainability. Finally, it provides a forum to keep the conversation flowing through webinars, discussion boards, and annual events announcements.

The graduate chapter here on campus is proud to announce that they achieved silver status​ during the 2013-2014 academic year. To receive silver status, chapters have to earn points by remaining active in the broader Net Impact community, maintaining active membership, and hosting a number of events during the school year. Net Impact events fall into three main categories: professional development, campus and community greening initiatives, and volunteering. The chapter hosted and participated in 14 events during the school year, highlights include:
  • Net Impact Annual Conference: While at the conference, the leadership team had opportunities to hear from corporate executives facing real-life sustainability challenges, network with professionals and students, and exchange chapter management strategies with other chapter leadership teams.
  • Sustainability Symposium with Pittsburgh Zoo and PPG Aquarium: Chapter members shared in an evening of networking and intentional conversation at an event hosted at the zoo to kick off their One Million Actions for Planet Earth campaign. Members were asked to speak at the event to showcase accomplishments of the chapter as well as the whole sMBA program.
  • IDEO Amplify Workshop: members of both the graduate and undergraduate chapters of Net. impact combined forces to tackle a brainstorming challenge posed through IDEO. The challenge asked groups to consider ways to make urban areas safer for women in impoverished areas. The team submitted an idea to the campaign question “How might we make urban areas safer and more empowering for women and girls?”
  • Summer 2014 Expected Events: book drive for graduate students in Ghana; “MAP Your Career” job search booster sessions; and “the Science of Sustainability” with University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg’s “Quest 2014: Finding Your Future” camp for high school students interested in sustainability-oriented careers.

Though events make up a majority of the chapter’s focus, the chapter also guided the initiation of three other chapters in Pittsburgh. Chatham University and University of Pittsburgh are both in the final stages of chapter formation and Duquesne’s undergraduate chapter has been revived thanks to our Undergraduate Chapter Liason, Kyle Gryta.

Net Impact is a community of 50,000+ students and professionals who are motivated to create positive change in schools, workplaces, and communities. Visit netimpact.org for more information.
Questions about the graduate chapter can be directed to Blair Schoenborn, chapter president, at schoenbornb@duq.edu. Contact Kyle Gryta at grytak@duq.edu for information or questions regarding the undergraduate chapter.
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