How Did I Decide to Apply for a Job at STLF?
A Reflection By Alec Fischer
For my sunrise blog post, I’ve done a lot of reflection work centered around how I ended up working at Students Today Leaders Forever. Unlike the majority of STLF employees working at a national level, I had never participated on a Pay It Forward tour or met any staff prior to deciding to apply for a position within the organization. How did I, having no prior experience going on a tour or working with fellow STLF college chapter members, decide to apply for a fellowship position?
Looking back to the time when I was searching for post-college jobs my senior year of college, there were three criteria I felt needed to be filled for whatever I applied for: the ability to use my videography and program development experience to further an organization's mission, the ability to travel, and the opportunity to work with youth in some sort of development setting. I also craved a work environment that championed innovation and the freedom to be creative and expressive both inside and outside of the office.
Soon after coming to this consensus, I received an email from the STLF National Office describing a newly open application for a Program Fellow position. Being vaguely familiar with the organization due to friends who had gone on Pay It Forward tours in college, I clicked on the link and began to learn more about the work they did.
I set up a meeting with Shelby Couch, who was referred to me by a friend who had previously attended and then led a Pay It Forward tour. We grabbed coffee at Segue (a local coffee shop) took a tour of the STLF office space, and talked about ethical leadership’s intersection with youth development. Within an hour of the meeting’s start, I knew I wanted to work for STLF.
Fast forward four months from making that internal decision. Here I sit at my newly assigned desk, typing out the words on my laptop to the official “Alec’s Sunrise” blog post for the STLF website. It turns out that STLF not only allowed me to cross off my requirement boxes for what I wanted in my first post-college job; it exceeded those by also encouraging me to explore further opportunities as a changemaker and young social entrepreneur.
Throughout the first few weeks I’ve been here, the national staff has made me feel as though I’ve been a part of the organization for years. The space they have created within their office and throughout the overall organization is truly unique. Despite being new, I already feel invested in ensuring an innovative and youth-driven future for STLF. I am incredibly excited to continue my journey here as the new Programs Fellow and cannot wait to explore the future of STLF with the rest of the National Staff!