Despite the pandemic, Sophia contributes much to Rise during internship

Jul 27, 2020


Sophia Ward is a senior at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul and will graduate in May 2021 with a major in business management and leadership and a minor in data analytics.

“Rise’s mission is close to my heart and I was excited to get an internship here,” said Sophia. “I have siblings who have all struggled with their own challenges and some have even used services similar to what Rise offers. I really wanted to help contribute to the great work that Rise does in its many communities.”

Sophia worked with Rise’s Advancement team on a variety of projects related to special events, including reaching out to local businesses for in-kind donations for the fundraising gala’s silent coming up October 26.

“Due to the pandemic, Rise’s Celebrate Rise event will be virtual for the first time ever this year so I did research on best practices for online fundraisers,” said Sophia. “I learned a lot about different formats and approaches to an online gala and hope that will be helpful as we plan for Rise’s event.

“When companies agreed to donate, it was very rewarding,” Sophia added. “It was nice to know that my work had resulted in tangible items that will help fund the amazing programs at Rise.

“Throughout my internship at Rise, I was able to improve on many skills and use my strengths. With a possible wedding and move out of state next year after her graduation, Sophia is not quite certain yet where or in what capacity she will apply her university degree and experience.

“I have really enjoyed my time at Rise,” said Sophia. “Although it has been an unconventional year, I am grateful for this opportunity to grow and learn new skills.”