One of the more valuable and sometimes surprising lessons Experience Matters share. As an example, Jan notes some of the students will indicate they want to be a chef but were unaware that culinary schools were an available option. “We’re just planting seeds,” Jan says. Additionally, students learn other valuable life skills such as financial literacy, which includes budgeting, investing, credit, and other financial knowledge that these youth may not gain elsewhere.
As Jan’s project came to a close, she created procedures and manuals to ensure that the program lives on after she leaves and can be replicated at other clubs. Jan has expressed that she feels her overall energy is up with this assignment, “because it has to be.” She also notes that she is consistently positive emotionally, even on days when she comes away exhausted from keeping up with these incredible kids. Overall, Jan says that this match has been a great experience and is “so happy” she did it. We personally can’t wait to see what Jan does next!s with our stakeholders and talent is that even if you spent your entire career working in the private sector, be it banking or construction, journalism or information technology, insurance or health care – your skills can transferred to the nonprofit sector! You can use your teaching experience writing curriculum for an animal welfare agency. You can use your legal background to draft procedures for an organization that helps the homeless. And, you can use your vast experience as a project manager for a utility company to help youth achieve their potential. Such is the case with Jan Bryant.
Jan retired in 2014 after 30 years with the Idaho Power Company. She worked as an Information Technology analyst and then as an IT Leader, where she proposed, implemented, and supervised a new information technology team. As part of her last days at the Idaho Power Company, Jan was a Senior Manager responsible for planning, coordinating, and oversight of a massive underground cable replacement program (over 7 million feet of cable, to be exact.) How does this complicated, and impressive, work for a utility company transfer over to the nonprofit sector?
Jan used her ability to design and implement new programs through her role in creating “Be Great: Graduate” with the Boys and Girls Clubs of the East Valley. Jan’s extensive experience coordinating complementary parts into a cohesive whole also came in handy, as she weaved together several existing standalone programs into this more streamlined effort. “Be Great: Graduate” is a comprehensive dropout-prevention program that encourages kids to graduate and move onto higher education, trade school, or another career pathway. The program helps kids develop career goals, and then identifies avenues to achieve those goals.