val_Kara_openhouse    Val_Fall 2013_CohortMtg_HarvestforHumanity

Submitted by: Valerie Fowler

After 29 years as an Administrative Assistant in several different departments and working in almost every building at Intel in Chandler and Ocotillo, I decided to take the Intel Early Retirement Program in July 2013 which included enrolling in the Encore Fellow program.  In late August, I began my fellowship as an Admin at Experience Matters.  They immediately made me feel like part of the team.  I felt great because I realized that I was able to use my years of administrative experience in this new position supporting Experience Matters. Plus, I feel a lot of personal satisfaction knowing that I’m a part of the effort to help strengthen the organizations that help people who are struggling.  It’s very gratifying making a positive difference in someone’s life– this was a bonus!

I had planned a number of events at Intel but nothing like the number of events we’re hosting at Experience Matters – whoa! From volunteer recognition to speaker events and awards, I keep very busy supporting the program team. I have learned a lot about nonprofit organizations and am amazed at all the different organizations that Experience Matters serves by matching them with the right talent to achieve their goals. From schools, healthcare and government organization to the arts and human services sector, Experience Matters is involved in making a positive change.

I truly enjoyed attending my Encore Fellow Cohort meetings about once a month because we toured all of the participating nonprofit organizations together. I learned so much and enjoyed networking with my peers.  After completing my 6-month, full-time, Encore Fellow assignment, I was thrilled to be hired on full-time as a Program Coordinator at Experience Matters. I look forward to learning something new every day here for a long time to come and am thankful for the chance to use my experience to make a difference in the community!