Interview with the Egyptian Theatre’s former DCNP intern and current volunteer, Michaela Alcantar.
ASHLEY: What is your current job and what do you like about it?
MICHAELA: I’m currently working at VAC as a kitchen assistant. I like how I’m able to further develop communication skills, time management, and taking on a leadership role at times. I’m definitely improving decision making skills when sudden issues or problems pop-up that need quick thinking.
A: How did your DCNP internship prepare you for positions after graduation?
M: My DCNP internship helped me by getting all the first time jitters out of the way. I was able to get comfortable with asking my employer questions and having discussions about concerns. It also helped me by seeing just how the skills I learned can transfer over to jobs that seem to not be related at all. For example, organizing time frames for interviews for a fundraiser transferred over as organizing inventory and scheduling cleaning days. You can always find a way to connect developed skills.
A: What’s your favorite memory from interning with the Egyptian Theatre?
M: I honestly can’t choose! It was so much fun working with the staff there and feeling welcomed to ask any questions that I might have had. I mainly helped with Marketing and Communication but I was also able to see the first stages of planning for the expansion project and the planning for the big fundraising event, GiveDeKalbCounty. Being able to see all the different pieces of how the Egyptian Theatre worked was a very interesting learning experience for me. From the laughs to learning how nonprofits function, I greatly enjoyed my time at the Egyptian.
A: What did you like most about the NNGO program at NIU?
M: I liked how I was able to see what nonprofits were looking for in an interviewee and what skills they wanted from them. Going through that many interviews at once was nerve-racking but very valuable in information of what to expect. I also liked how my professor made sure that I could go to them for help if any issues ever came up.
A: Do you have any advice for people looking to get involved with NGO work?
M: Do what you love so that you don’t feel like you’re working. Find a nonprofit that you can see yourself getting behind and supporting its mission.