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Purdue Master's

Krannert Board Fellows Program

The Krannert Board Fellows program seeks to place current Krannert Master’s Programs students on the boards of local not-for-profit organizations. Students will act as non-voting members of the board, serve on committees and many times complete a project for the organization. Students benefit by gaining an understanding of the role of business leaders on non-profit boards while using their business knowledge and tools learned in the classroom to serve their communities. Organizations benefit from this program also by gaining access to talented business leaders with fresh and innovative ideas who can provide new perspectives to board decisions.

The mission of the Krannert Board Fellows program is to:

  • Support local non-profit organizations by leveraging the skills, talents, intellectual capability, and experiences of the students, to solve strategic and operational issues faced by the organizations
  • Develop Krannert students into valuable community leaders, especially in the non-profit sector
  • Establish Krannert’s brand as a program that produces community oriented volunteers and leaders
  • Provide students with hands-on experiences of serving on a nonprofit board thereby enriching their education at Krannert.


The Krannert Board Fellows program will be managed by Master’s Programs students, faculty and staff in the Student Services office. The Associate Director of Student Services will manage the completion of all necessary milestones for the program. Responsibility will be with the Student Services Office with the future goal of distributing more responsibility to Master's Programs students.


The Krannert Board Fellows Program seeks to provide quality service to participating non-profit organizations in three ways.

Board Fellow Services

1) Board Committee Service: The most essential service Fellows provide is a non-voting board and committee participation. By serving on committees and attending board meetings, students integrate into the organization and give quality input to the organization to aid in decision making processes.

2) Mission Competition: The program seeks to encourage students to complete projects or lead initiatives for the organizations they are assigned to and to advance the mission mentioned above. These projects or initiatives will enable students to apply the skills learned in business school in a real world company and provide valuable insights and service to the organization. To ensure high quality project deliverables, students are encouraged engage early in the cycle to define the scope of a possible project or initiative. There will also be regular check in with the Fellows with regards to the deliverables and timelines. At the end of the assignment, the Fellows will submit their work for review by the Board Fellows Staff. The top 3 projects/initiatives will be presented to Fellows, faculty, staff, nonprofit board members, and government leaders at an end of the semester banquet.

3) Board Fellows: Finally, the program seeks to assign two students to each organization – a first-year and second-year graduate student will be paired. In doing so, a mentor relationship is formed and organizations receive the benefits of various skills sets and talent.

Student Expectations

Students will be required to submit an application and go through an interview process. Upon selection, students are required to attend all board meetings while school is in session with few exceptions (medical emergencies or inflexible interviews). If assigned a project, students are expected to complete it by the stipulated deadline and present to the board. Also, students are required to participate in all preparatory training as well as supplementary workshops during the semester. They will also be required to provide detailed feedback on an on-going basis. It is expected that students will commit between 1-4 hours a week to serve as a Board Fellow.

Student selection will be determined based on characteristics that include:

  • Commitment to the program and ability to commit time required
  • Interest level in board service work, volunteering, specific cause
  • Diversity of background, work experience and perspectives
  • Academic standing by the time of application
  • Communication skills
  • Proven track record of self-motivation and ability

Program Duration

The program will run from October through the next December. Students apply in October and matching and initial training occur by November. The service term then starts in December and ends in the following December. The term may be shortened to better accommodate some schedule requirements of either students or organizations. These exceptions will be handled on case by case basis.


A variety of training formats will be used to prepare students for their service. These include information sessions, training workshops, applicable coursework,  and one-on-one support from peers, Master’s Programs faculty and staff. In all, you can expect these trainings to require 2 to 10 hours per semester.

Academic Credit

The program will be assessed over time to determine if students can earn credit for their board service.

Non-Profit Organizations

Organization will be required to submit an application and may also have to meet with program leaders to discuss fit. They will also be required to provide exposure to their board and assign Fellows to at least one committee that they will serve on. All meeting schedules need to be clearly communicated to Fellows. The organization is also required to select at least one mentor, who will guide and educate the Fellows, and be a resource for questions. They are also expected to provide regular feedback on the program and Fellows. Finally, it is expected that the mentor will commit 30 minutes per week to assist the Fellows with their projects.


Organization selection will be based on characteristics that include:

  • Diversity of missions (e.g. the arts, environment, social welfare etc.)
  • Diversity of organization size
  • Mentors (willingness, reliability, and availability)
  • Regularly scheduled board and committee meetings (very important)
  • Interest level in working with a Krannert Board Fellow and commitment to the program


Participating Organizations Include

The Lafayette Symphony Orchestra

LSO logoProjects include increasing ticket revenue and awareness on Purdue's campus. Engage a new audience by focusing on diversity and the "art" of music.

Lafayette Transitional Housing

LTHC logoDevelop a marketing plan with goals of obtaining continual incremental giving as well as growing donor base.

The United Way of Greater Lafayette

United WayUpdate annual personnel review to increase Human Resource acumen.

Right Steps Child Development Center

Right StepsModify board strategic plan, draft a self-assessment of board members and evaluate the board. Set-up timeline for implementation of strategic plan.

Indiana Community Cancer Network

CancerExplore a food voucher program and build relationships to institute an Purdue internship program.

The Wabash Center

Projects include the opportunity to analyze and define improvements to current business processes, develop strategy to implement new business processes, and document financial trends and develop projections.

Indiana's Technolog Center

Generate innovative ideas to market the regions assets to prospective companies looking to relocate or expand to the area.

Purdue/Indiana 4-H

Strategically connect with donors to increase number of planned yearly donations and to connect with donors under 40.

Lyn Treece Boys and Girls Club

Review skills and qualifications of Board of Directors in comparisons to other non-profits industry best practices.


Krannert Master's Programs Office @ krannertmasters@purdue.edu or 877-MBA-KRAN