Shannon St. Pierre, Creative Learning Solutions Analyst, was recently invited to return to her alma mater, University of New Hampshire, to participate in an alumni panel for Social Innovation Interns and share advice and success stories about her career at Dare Mighty Things (DMT). Three other alumni, Megan Brabec, Keegan Smith, and Conor McFarland, also sat on the panel to share their experiences as interns and how it impacted their career paths. Shannon participated in the Social Innovation Internship Program in 2013 at Dare Mighty Things, and graduated from UNH in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Psychology, at which time she was offered a full-time position with DMT.
The Center for Social Innovation and Enterprise(CSIE) selects a handful of student leaders for the Social Innovation Internship. Each intern spends the summer at a different host organization and joins the other interns for trainings in social innovation and entrepreneurship. At the culmination of the internship, interns present at a high-profile Showcase where they reflect on their experiences and recommend how UNH can better support student change-makers and social entrepreneurs.
Facilitated by Faina Bukher, Program Manager, and Fiona Wilson, Executive Director at CSIE, Shannon was asked to share her experience as an intern, insights into her career, skills she gained in the internship, advice for current interns, and what she loves about her career. Shannon shared that “Prior to the internship I had never heard of social innovation or the triple bottom line: people, planet, and profit, and I always thought my compassion and empathy would be served through volunteerism, as a hobby, not a career. The internship experience changed the lens through which I see the world, and now I have a career that serves a social mission and I look for sustainable practices in my daily life, such as buying local and fair trade, being aware of labor practices and company missions, and supporting socially innovative ideas and initiatives.”
As a member of the Creative Learning Solutions team at DMT, Shannon contributes to the analysis, design, development, and evaluation of technology-infused learning products, as well as program design and assessment for nonprofits, foundations, and government agencies. Focus areas include resilience, mentoring, and reintegration in families, the workforce, and society. She has been an active member in many community service organizations, such as Alpha Phi Omega, Kiwanis, and other leadership programs.