West Long Branch, New Jersey—Monmouth University is private university, and the Turner Syndrome Foundation is a nonprofit organization, both located in New Jersey. Individuals at both work together to make a difference for a shared cause- the Turner Syndrome community.
In 2009, The Turner Syndrome Foundation was founded by Laura Fasciano as a nonprofit organization with a mission to reduce the age of diagnosis and increase the standard of care for the 1 in 2000 females affected by this genetic condition. The Turner Syndrome Foundation also provides educational resources, supports research, and continues to broaden its reach to patients and caregivers worldwide. TSF is not just an organization, it is a community that provides support and understanding.
At Monmouth University, students become involved in different ways. Students can become involved through clubs, on-campus/off-campus jobs, Greek organizations, volunteer work, being Ras and student ambassadors. Some students even start work at a Nonprofit organization.
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There are currently five wonderful students at Monmouth University working for the Turner Syndrome Foundation, who all contribute to the Turner Syndrome Foundation in their own unique way. Let’s introduce these student employees.
Ameka Yawson works at the Turner Syndrome Foundation as Program. She shared, “I decided to work with TSF because I was trying to explore a job opportunity that combines two passions of mine, both medicine and sociology. This job was the perfect fit. I get to be part of a team that is seeking answers for a medical condition which is just awesome.” Ameka really enjoys the skills she gains while working for the Foundation, such as utilizing Excel, because she knows she’ll use this while in the workforce.
Ameka is not the only student who has gained valuable skills through her work experience. Kierstyn Holly, who has been Communications Coordinator for over a year, has gained experience in public relations and social media. She also feels good that in her role she can “encourage and support those with Turner Syndrome, advocate for this cause, and let the stories of those living with TS be known.” This is a shared sentiment among many of the student employees, who realize the difference they are making in their role.
Annabella Marte is another student who has enjoyed being involved with the Turner Syndrome Foundation because of the unique experience it provides. “I’ve always wanted to develop experience with a nonprofit as well to gain insight and help those in need,” she explains. This represents how student employees with TSF both gain practical skills that help develop their careers, while also knowing that they are doing good.
Each of the student employees contributes to TSF’s mission in a unique way. For example, Rowan Elrais is a junior at Monmouth University, and she is in the 5-year program for Special Education. She contributes to initiatives that improve the supports for students with TS in the classroom. By working with TSF, Rowan has gained knowledge of the condition which she had never heard of before, but can make an impact by contributing her perspective and skills to the mission. This is also common in student employees, as they typically come without any prior knowledge of the condition, and leave having gained a new sense of understanding and passion for the community.
Kayla provides a great example of a student turned passionate for the cause. “With my job, I am raising awareness for Turner Syndrome and the organization created to support it. I have a voice that I can use to inform other people and have them get involved. Knowing that I can contribute to this cause warms my heart and makes me realize the power of advocacy and education.”
These students are a wonderful addition to the Turner Syndrome Foundation. Each one of their positions is significant to the growth and prominence of this organization. We are all very enthusiastic about using our roles to create change and spread awareness of Turner Syndrome. We may only just be college students, but we are hard workers, learning as we go. TSF has provided us with a wonderful opportunity. We are all proud to not only represent TSF but Monmouth University as well.