Office of Student Life

Student Activities

Nonprofit Immersion Program

The Nonprofit Immersion Program is a cohort of students who are paired with nonprofit organizations in Columbus. Students serve as non-voting members of the organizations for one year, where they learn about, and get hands-on experience in, the inner workings of a nonprofit.

Students in the program work under the guidance of a board mentor and a program advisor and also attend workshops focused on the leadership professional development skills needed to effectively contribute to a nonprofit organization.

Our nonprofit organizations that we partner with for the Nonprofit Immersion Program are subject to change year to year, however partners that we have worked with in the past include; Broad Street Food Pantry, Neighborhood Services Inc., RELA, I Know I Can, City Year Columbus, Neighborhood Design Center, VET Motorsports, and Wild Goose Creative.  


The Nonprofit Immersion's mission is to:

  • Prepare Ohio State students to be responsible community leaders through an immersive experience with boards of local nonprofit organizations
  • Provide Ohio State students with development of leadership and organizational skills
  • Support nonprofit organizations and the local community by offering a fresh perspective and skill set


After participating in the Nonprofit Immersion Program, students will demonstrate competencies in:

  • Operations of nonprofit organizations
  • Relationship building
  • Critical thinking
  • Leadership development
  • Project management

Learning Objectives

After participating in the Nonprofit Immersion Program, students will be able to:

  • Articulate how nonprofits operate, make decisions, and impact the community.
  • Develop working relationships with board members and volunteers within the city of Columbus, the Ohio State University community, as well as those within the student cohort.
  • Connect theoretical ideas from within the classroom to practical experiences within their designated nonprofit organization, as well as those of their classmates.
  • Apply components of the Social Change Model of Leadership to their experience with the Nonprofit Immersion Program.
  • Design, implement, and execute a project in line with the mission, vision, and values of their nonprofit organization.

With questions, or for more information, please email Alyssa Johnson at

Join the Nonprofit Immersion Program! 

Prospective Nonprofit Immersion Program participants are students who will be at least third-year (Junior) status by autumn semester 2019 and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher. Students are required to attend bi-weekly cohort meetings beginning in September 2019. 

Applicants should have a strong sense of social responsibility and interest in learning more about local community engagements and the structure of nonprofit and community service organizations. Although there are no specific academic backgrounds or interests required, selected students typically represent a diverse array of majors, previous community service experiences, and perspectives that can contribute to the cohort experience, as well as to the nonprofit organizations.

Student Participant Expectations

  • It is strongly encouraged that all participants enroll in PUBAFRS 2150, Intro to Nonprofit Organizations for AU2019. 
    • If you have already completed this course, you will not need to repeat it.
  • Attend biweekly meetings in the Ohio Union in autumn and spring semesters to engage in co-curricular experiences (leadership and professional development, guest speakers, etc.)
  • Engage in at least 15 hours of community service for fall semester.
  • Develop a strategic project aimed at addressing a specific board/agency need.
    • This project will be developed over the course of autumn semester and implemented throughout spring semester.

Application Requirements

In addition to basic contact inforamtion, the online application requires:

  • Resume
  • Responses to the following questions (250 words max for each short answer response):
    • What words would you use to describe your top 5 strengths?
    • Please tell us what skills and experiences you hope to gain from participating in the Nonprofit Immersion program.
    • What knowledge, skills, and abilities do you possess that would contribute to the work of a nonprofit agency/ board?
    • Please define the concept of commitment. What does it mean to commit to something? Give an example of a time you made and honored a commitment.
    • What social issues are you most passionate about? Please briefly explain why you chose these social issue(s). 
  • Contact information (name, email, phone) for 2 professional/ academic references


The application is closed. If you'd like additional information, or have any questions, contact Sara Sexton at or Alyssa Johnson at