Current Students: Student Profiles

Student Profile: Morgan B. Powell, C'2015

An Intern's Editorial: We Are Present

From the National Urban League Wire

When approached by my peers about my summer plans, I proudly boast that I am interning at the National Urban League, the renowned civil rights organization that advocates on behalf of millions of underserved Americans led by President Marc H. Morial.

Usually this dialogue of discussing internship plans with college students can often be competitive and an assumed small insight into how successful our futures and careers will be, based on the big name corporations, research institutes, and federal programs we whom we are are affiliated.

So when I was finally asked to go in depth about what exactly the National Urban League and its Affiliates do, I found myself disappointed at the fact that I could speak on behalf of the mission and general programs but not able to converse on the organization’s work within detail amongst my peers. In fact, I was even more perplexed when a peer had never heard of the Urban League and my cookie-cutter response did not exactly give them the well-rounded answer they were looking for.

As much research as I had done to get the internship, I was not in the position to explain to my peers why the work of the Urban League was so important because I could only speak on it from a historical perspective not a current social one.

Thus this leads me to my editorial of what my fellow interns and I are doing to change just that. We all found ourselves struggling with this lack of true understanding and have found a unique way of relating and relaying the work and mission of the National Urban League and its Affiliates to our Millennial generation.

The National Urban League Intern Class of 2014 has devised a well-crafted strategy to increase the visibility of the Urban League and intrigue our peers in the hard work of the organization by inviting them to join the movement.

Our campaign is entitled: We Are Present. We will use the multi-faceted hashtag, #BePresent, as the focal point of our strategy. “#BePresent” will be used to explore and demonstrate how Millennials are active in the social justice sphere. For example, “present in education,” “present in policy debates,” and so on.

The campaign is divided into three detailed components: Social Media, a Campus Ambassador Program, and an Externship. The social media strategy’s main objectives are to create an interactive and diverse platform on the National Urban League’s social media accounts, and to gain the interest of Millennials by providing resources relevant to their needs. In doing so, we will engage our peers via Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Facebook, and Youtube. We find it vital and effective to directly interact with Millenials and young professionals through these social channels, and think its important to see faces of the movement that are similar to their own.

The program will allow the National Urban League and its Affiliates to actively engage our peers and encourage the work of the movement.  In the Campus Ambassador program, a student will assist in marketing the Urban League’s events and services to their campus communities. It is likely that Urban League Affiliates would play a role in helping to advertise this position at local colleges and universities.

The Externship component would consist of being the liaison between college Ambassadors and National Urban League Staff. The externs would be responsible for maintaining the National Urban League Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Most of the content posted would come from the Campus Ambassadors and Affiliates.

Hopefully with the execution of the 2014 Summer Interns’ We Are Present Campaign the 2015 summer interns will be met with enthusiasm from their peers when they tell them that they are interning with the National Urban League.