About two months ago now I was informed of a program called the Haller Global Honors Fellowship. I am not going to lie, to start I actually had to google what a fellowship is. But soon enough I decided to apply and as I come to the end of this opportunity, I can confidently say that being a part of this fellowship has been one of the most informative and rewarding experiences of my life.
Before we started, I didn’t really know what to expect, except that I would be meeting a bunch of great people and I would get some college experience before even stepping on campus. Those expectations were not only met, they were blown out of the water. On the very first day, we were introduced to the client we would be working with, a small London non-profit organization called Southwark Pensioners Centre or SPC. Immediately, I was hit by the realization that the work we would be doing was going to have a real-world impact. With that realization came some nerves, but also a profound level of excitement. The nerves came from the fact that I had never done anything like this before. Was I ready? But the excitement came from the fact that I would get to learn and use a plethora of skills that I am going to need in my future career.
From learning how to use Microsoft Teams to using creative problem-solving skills to tackle the challenges that faced SPC, this fellowship enhanced every skill in my toolbox. I learned how to be a better communicator to my fellow teammates and a client. I learned how to present my ideas in a clear and concise manner. In a nutshell, I learned what to say in the business world, but more importantly, how to say it. These are skills that I can apply wherever I go, whatever I choose to do. But that is not all this fellowship had to offer.
Over the past two weeks, I also had the privilege of meeting incredible business professionals whose industry knowledge can only be matched by their willingness to pass that knowledge onto others. And of course, I got to meet and befriend 11 brilliant peers with who I am excited to spend the next four years at Pitt. It was inspiring to see my peers work so passionately on this project, and it pushed me to work just as hard.
This fellowship gave me the opportunity to make a tangible impact, and after presenting to the client yesterday and seeing their excitement to our ideas, I can walk away from this experience knowing that I did make an impact. And for that, I cannot say thank you enough to the Haller Foundation, our program director Anthony Gomez, Professor Ray Jones, and everybody who made this opportunity a reality! I cannot wait to get on campus to continue my Pitt journey!