Professional Development

“Lake Effect Leaders has been more of an avenue into professional development than I ever expected.  It really immerses you in the world of nonprofits and gives you the skills and experience you need to be successful in the field. But, even more importantly, I feel like it gives you a solid foundation in the professional development necessary for moving in any direction you may be headed.”   ~Nate Z.

Leaders reflect on year 
during training


A main priority of the Lake Effect Leaders is the professional development of our members throughout the course of their service.  Our goal is to provide Leaders with the resources and support necessary to succeed at their host site.  Our members complete their term of service with transferable skills they can apply during the next stage of their career.

Local Orientation 
At the beginning of their term of service, Leaders attend a local orientation that’s specifically created for our project.  During this orientation, Leaders will meet the members of their cohort, learn about project expectations, and explore their role as a Lake Effect Leader.

Leaders plan for Nonprofit Day

Front Loaded Trainings
At the beginning of the Leader term, we prepare our members for their assignments through a comprehensive training series.  During this initial series, Leaders come together for weekly trainings that provide them with the necessary foundation to build capacity at their host site.  This series also gives members the opportunity to learn more about their fellow Leaders and understand how they complement each other’s strengths as a cohort.



Ongoing Training and Support

After the initial training series, Leaders continue to meet once a month for ongoing training.  This ongoing schedule allows for flexibility to address the unique challenges each cohort might encounter during their term of service.  In addition to these monthly sessions, Leaders have access to book clubs, conferences, community forums, lectures, and workshops covering a variety of capacity building and contect specific topics.

Leaders facilitate activity

Leader trainings typically include:

  • Fundraising: Corporate Sponsorships, Donor Relationships, Event Planning, Grant Writing
  • Volunteer Management: Recruitment, Training, Tracking 
  • Marketing and Communication: Annual Reports, Branding, Reacting Target Audiences
  • Online Communication: E-Newsletters, Social Media, Websites
  • Professionalism: Elevator speeches, Navigating the Work Environment, Networking