On April 18th, the Maryland Governor’s Office on Service & Volunteerism hosted their 2nd annual Life After AmeriCorps professional development conference to prepare AmeriCorps members for their careers and journeys ahead. Yolanda Fraction, Portfolio Training Manager lit up the Corinthian Ballroom with her vivacious energy as she welcomed nearly 150 AmeriCorps members at the Grand in Baltimore. She explained that the event was strategically planned to equip and empower each attendee. Yolanda filled the day to the brim, including the option to take professional head shots prior to the event, and she challenged each member to stay until the very end to experience an interactive alumni panel.
Maryland Governor’s Coordinating Offices Senior Executive Director Patrick Lally, Maryland Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives Executive Director Steve McAdams, and Maryland Governor’s Office on Service and Volunteerism Director Van Brooks delivered opening remarks to AmeriCorps members.
James Schulte, Volunteer Maryland and AmeriCorps member serving at Carry Murray Nature Center, said, “I really enjoyed the event. I really liked the part from Director Van Brooks about branding and how you should present yourself and I was inspired by his story. The whole event was done very well.”
Cassie Motok, Volunteer Maryland and AmeriCorps member serving at Caring Matters, said, “I thought the event was great and I really enjoyed it. I had not updated my resume since school and I really needed to so I attended the resume break out session which was my favorite. It was so refreshing to learn how to clean up my resume and make it look nice.”
The event hit the ground running with special guest speakers such as Dr. Talaya Waller and the aforementioned Van Brooks as well as several amazing sessions to attend including a networking lunch with endless opportunities however the AmeriCorps Alumni panel at the end was well worth the wait. The audience was given the opportunity to ask the panel any and all questions and the answers were nothing short of inspiring. “Don’t be intimidated,” “Do what you love,” “Know your why,” Keep going,” and “You don’t have to be alone” were all messages from the panel. There was no doubt that each and every AmeriCorps member was shown appreciation that day for their service.