By Lacie Blankenship
The 2023 Owen Board Fellows program kicked off in early January when 31 first-year MBA students began their fellowship term with local nonprofit partners. Led by the Turner Family Center for Social Ventures (TFC) and 100% Owen, the Vanderbilt Business community service and philanthropy club, Board Fellows is one of the many social impact opportunities for Vanderbilt MBA students.
The program launched in 2019 and matches MBA students with local nonprofits where they serve as non-voting board members for a year-long fellowship. Board Fellows is a chance for students to engage meaningfully with the community and strengthen leadership skills. Through the fellowship, students not only attend board and committee meetings but also work with executive leaders on a strategic project within their nonprofit organization.
“Owen Board Fellows connects MBA students with opportunities for community leadership and allows them to learn about nonprofit governance by giving them hands-on experience,” says Kathleen Fuchs Hritz, Assistant Director, TFC. “Our nonprofit partners provide invaluable experiences by opening the door for student learning and contribution.”
This year’s cohort comprises 31 participating students and 28 nonprofits (listed below). Students are selected to participate based on an application and interview process that concludes in November with matches announced each December.
“The Owen Board Fellows Program gave me the unique opportunity to apply classroom teachings to a nonprofit setting,” says Deepa Dhore (MBA’23), Owen Board Fellow 2022 with Retrieving Independence and Owen Board Fellow VP of Internal Affairs. “The program taught me how to leverage my business experience in a community leadership role.”
2023 Owen Board Fellows Nonprofit Partners