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A Career in the Non-Profit World Is a Labor of Love

Being raised in a home with two theater loving parents led today’s guest of Your Employment Matters on a journey which ultimately led to a life that she loves. 

Caitlin White had parents and grandparents who immersed her in all the facets of the arts as a child. “Living in a home where music and movies were constantly playing, it was only natural that I took voice, baton, and piano lessons. 

As I grew older, I eventually participated in summer stock programs and various community acting troupes.” Caitlyn shares as she reflects on her childhood years. 

Attending Drew University and graduating with a degree in Acting was just a natural life progression. After graduation Caitlin worked for five years in regional theater. During this time, she realized that being a professional actor was not the same as an acting student. 

“As a student there was always a next.  Your next production, your next class, but as a professional, you had to audition to have your next, and I did not like to audition.”

Together with a few friends, Caitlin was instrumental in forming their own theater company.  In this newly founded company, she took on the administrative tasks and found her passion. 

She found joy in the fundraising side of the arts, like learning how to how to use crowd sourcing campaigns to earn the capital to fund their productions. 

“Fundraising is easy when you believe in the cause. You are telling the truth and you come across as genuine. Because you are working with the same funders, you build a sense of community, and we have had some members for as long as we have been a production company.”

When asked for advice for anyone entering the non-profit field, Caitlin again emphatically states that you must have a genuine love for mission-based needs and organizations. Be prepared and willing to wear a lot of hats in the in the beginning. You will need to teach yourself how to swim in real time. 

You MUST have a love for people and not get burnt out on the talking-to-people portion. The mathematical equation in fundraising is solved by people. 

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