Our APproach

The Second Day Impact Fellowship

The Second Day team spent over a year testing and iterating different interventions to mobilize top talent into the social impact space. We’ve interviewed hundreds of users and studied dozens of talent organizations across the nonprofit and for-profit world to understand what works and what doesn’t. Using that information, we’ve built the Second Day Impact Fellowship.

The Second Day Impact Fellowship is a program designed for college seniors that are serious about changing how we approach social challenges. Potential Impact Fellows apply in the Fall, and a cohort is accepted by October on each of our partner campuses. Each cohort meets weekly from November to May and covers a program that prepares the Fellows for roles at top nonprofits and social enterprises. The program focuses on six key-elements:

Industry Deep Dives

We start with the foundation. What does the social impact space look like? Who are the different players and what role do each of them play? We break down these key elements and introduce some of the common and fruitful paths to growth within the industry.

Mentorship

The social impact space is complex and we don’t have all of the answers. That’s why we’ve built a network of hundreds of allies across nonprofits and social enterprises that can offer insight into their work. Connections through the program can range from alumni dinners, to informational interviews, to sector insights in general. The goal is for you to get your questions answered about the social impact space and start building a network that will prove valuable to you for years to come. 

Discernment

Our goal is to help Impact Fellows refine how to think about their career path. They are guided through exploring which causes they are passionate about, what career pathways are available, and best practices for advancing to leadership positions. It also focuses heavily on self-reflection and discerning the right path forward that fits each person’s unique needs, strengths, and desires.

Skill Development

Large employers offer very structured training and roles, while nonprofits and social enterprises often offer less training and more role-flexibility. While this can present challenges for young employees, it also provides a great opportunity for budding, ambitious leaders with some core skills in place to impress from day one. Our fellowship program focuses on equipping you with critical skills to handle your first role and quickly take on more responsibility. See the skills section below for more detail.

Job Hunt Support

The final element of the Fellowship is support for Fellows to secure full-time jobs at nonprofits or social enterprises. We provide connections with our employer partners, guides for navigating different fields, and support for applying successfully. The intended outcome of this process is for every graduating Fellow to build a robust network, develop knowledge of the industry, and secure a job that sets them up for a successful career. See the employers and job matching section for additional information.

Community

After so much structure in school, it is tempting to go with a predictable, “safe” path by joining a big start-class at a well-known firm. Structure and community are critical as you take the leap into your first job, but it is possible to recreate that feeling in other ways. This is why Second Day prioritizes deep relationships with the other Impact Fellows and alumni who have been in your shoes. We’re building your support network for the rewarding journey ahead. 

In its first year, the Second Day Impact Fellowship is expected to serve approximately 30-40 fellows across our partner campuses: Georgetown, Harvard, Rice, and UT Austin. The program will then expand significantly from there, both to operate on other campuses and to reach young professionals that are interested in transitioning into nonprofits or social enterprises. These elements are designed to provide a compelling proposition to mobilize the best minds to work on the problems that matter.

Does this align to your experience in social impact? We’d love to hear from you and learn from your experience. Reach out to us here.