Council of Korean Americans, Washington, D.C.
This past summer, I served as the membership and marketing intern with the Council of Korean Americans (CKA). CKA is a nonprofit organization based in Washington, D.C., that has the primary mission of building up the national voice and influence of the Korean American community. Since its founding in 2011, CKA has grown into a nationwide network with more than 300 members who hold leadership positions in a variety of fields. CKA builds connections among members through affinity groups and organized events to capitalize on advocacy for and representation of the Korean American community. The organization also aims to foster leadership potential, simultaneously coordinating the Emerging Leaders Scholarship (ELS)—a summer internship program for Korean American college students.
In my role, I worked alongside the CKA staff, primarily supporting their membership and marketing managers in a wide variety of tasks. I managed operational needs for membership, such as keeping records of and organizing membership applications, dues, renewals and resignations. My short-term, day-to-day tasks varied, including research around event logistics, compilation of members’ information/data and design for membership communications. As a longer-term project, I reviewed the CKA website and membership demographics records to update and maintain consistency and accuracy of both.
On the marketing side, I gained exposure to many different facets of marketing, including content strategy, social media outreach and email marketing. On a daily basis, I took on communications responsibilities in overseeing CKA’s social media platforms (Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn), building records on members’ and partner/related organizations’ social media channels and lines of communication. I was trained in producing ad copy for social media posts and was tasked with drafting much of CKA’s social media content. I was also responsible for a monthly newsletter, for which I researched relevant member and community updates, wrote copy for each entry and completed formatting to prepare it for publication. My largest independent project related to marketing was to initiate a content strategy to establish a more prominent social media presence for ELS.
Through these both short and long-term tasks, I gained many more technical skills, including increased proficiency with Google Sheets/Excel, training and certification in digital marketing and content strategy and exposure to industry platforms for project management and customer relationship management. More broadly, my time with CKA provided me with more in-depth insight into both the positives and challenges of the nonprofit sector and of collaboration with a relatively small team. This experience was also an opportunity for me to immerse myself in a team of AAPI individuals with whom I could relate and to focus on AAPI presence and empowerment in our present day.
I have always been drawn to the nonprofit industry and, since coming to Williams, have been more attuned to my Korean-American identity, and this internship gave me more perspective as to the work currently being done (by nonprofits) and still needing to be done to advocate for the AAPI community. I sincerely thank the Class of 1972 and the ’68 Center for Career Exploration for providing me with this opportunity.