Meet the Staff: Samantha

1.    Tell us about yourself. 

I was born and raised in Anaheim, California. I moved to El Paso when I was 12. I am the second oldest out of seven children. I am currently in the Master of Arts Nonprofit Management program at the University of Houston-Downtown. I intend to graduate December 2019. I have a B.A. in English/Professional Writing from The University of Texas at San Antonio. I currently reside in El Paso. When I am not working, I enjoy spending time with my three cats, camping, and going to the movies with my fiancé. Volunteering has always been a big passion of mine, so I look forward to my time here at United Way!

2.    Give us a description of what you do for United Way.  

As the Development Intern with United Way, I assist the director of resource development and the development team. All of the resources collected help United Way continue its work for the community. 

3.    Why is this work so important to our community?

As a nonprofit organization, United Way relies on the support of donors through various streams. Whether it is monetary or through donation of time, it is important for individuals to be involved with their community. Financial and volunteer resources that are collected through the campaign help United Way continue its mission to help El Pasoans achieve success within the areas of financial sustainability, education, basic needs, and health. 

4.    What is the most surprising thing you have learned about the community and yourself in your time at United Way? 

Before beginning my internship, I knew fairly little about United Way. Now, the most surprising thing I have learned is how deeply involved the organization is within the community through many partnerships and collaborations. United Way brings so many organizations together to create a bigger impact in El Paso. In addition, I learned that this organization operates its own programs. While United Way is commonly viewed as a funder to other local nonprofits, it also oversees the operation of its own programs, such as the Grade Level Reading Initiative and Parents as Teachers. 

5.    Share a quote that motivates you as a person and as a member of the United Way team.

“For what it’s worth; it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.” –Francis Scott Fitzgerald.