Briana Sallis was hired in as the event coordination intern with the National Alliance on Mental Illness. NAMI is the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization.
As an intern, Sallis was providing assistance through her position to the entire state of Michigan, with more than 20 affiliate offices throughout the state. These offices offer support and services to people who are affected by mental illness. The services are of no charge to the individual or their families.
One of her main responsibilities was coordinating the largest fundraiser event, a 5K. Sallis was responsible for putting everything together for the walk including set-up, scheduling and vendors. In total, 90 percent of the funds raised within the 5k event stays in-state and benefits NAMI. In previous fundraisers, Sallis raised $120,000 with her team. Outside of the large events, she handled various day-to-day tasks including social media management, community engagement, calling sponsors and building relationships with people.
Sallis loved every aspect of her internship and continually put her best foot forward. College taught her the graphic design and website design skills she uses in her job now, as well as great connections with professors whom she can reach out to. Sallis did not expect to have her job grow on her as much as it did.
“The mission of NAMI has changed my life professionally and personally,” Sallis said. She is committed to communicating to individuals and students to show them they are not alone and someone cares.
Since being an intern at NAMI, the organization has hired Sallis on full time. Sallis says she feels complete at her job. She wanted to tell students to be proactive on their job or internship and start looking now.
“Tweak your resume as you go and never stop tweaking it,” Sallis said. “Don’t be afraid to reinvent yourself.”