Public Spirit, November 2018

We’re back!

The InterCorps Council is BACK! Our 2018-2019 InterCorps Council is made up of individuals from 20 different AmeriCorps programs and we’re ready to help you connect with other AmeriCorps members and the public with fun events, service opportunities, and more!

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The Inter Corps Council

The InterCorps Council of Minnesota (ICC) is an organization of AmeriCorps members chosen from the State, National, and VISTA programs within Minnesota.

The vision of the InterCorps Council of Minnesota is to promote engagement, communication, collaboration, and education to empower AmeriCorps members and the Minnesota community. This means that our goal is to offer professional development, service events, networking, training, and other various opportunities to help all Minnesota AmeriCorps members grow in their service year.

To accomplish these goals, the service members appointed to the council serve in two capacities: ambassadors or council members.

Greater Minnesota (outside the metro) service members have the opportunity to serve as an ambassador, while Twin Cities service members have the opportunity to serve with one of the five committees:

1. Executive

2. Communications (CoCo)

3. Training and Education (TED)

4. Service

5. Social and Networking (SoNet)

In addition to service members, ICC has two advisors who assist the council from both ServeMinnesota - the state's Commission on National and Community Service (Des), and the Minnesota Office of Corporation for National and Community Service or CNCS (David).

The ICC is a unique opportunity that allows AmeriCorps members across programs to network and collaborate with one another. As part of the ICC, members enhance their service year, grow their professional development and leadership skills, and build connections throughout the AmeriCorps community as a whole.

What is the commitment level for the ICC?

Service on the ICC begins in October and ends in June of the following year. The commitment level varies depending on a member's role within the council.

How are members selected?

Each AmeriCorps program across the state of Minnesota appoints service members to be their representative(s) or ambassador(s) on the ICC. The election of these members differs from across programs.

If you are interested in being your program's ICC representative or ambassador, please contact your program manager/supervisor to learn about the election process.

So…who are we?

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Executive Committee- We guide and support the InterCorps Council in its work to enact its vision.

President: Zayn Saifullah, College Possible

Vice President: Olivia Glen-Rayner, C3 Twin Cities

Outreach Coordinator: Angela Williams, EMERGE Community Development

Results and Impact Specialist: Holly Fudge, MN Alliance With Youth


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Communications Committee- We promote national service in Minnesota and broadcast the work of the Council and AmeriCorps members through social media, the Public Spirit newsletter, AmeriCorps programs, and community partners.

Committee Chair: Christy Ohlrogge, Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity

Vice Chair: Bridget Gihl, MN Reading Corps

Megan Graves, MN Literacy Council

Katie Connolly, MN Math Corps

Katelyn Zeits, MN Council of Nonprofits

Elizabeth Nault-Maurer, Conservation Corps of MN and IA


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Service Committee- We plan and execute service projects like the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service, AmeriCorps Week, and other service events throughout the year.

Committee Chair: Natalie Fiedler, MN Reading Corps

Brian Call, City of Minneapolis

Katie Krebsbach, City of Lakes AmeriCorps

Kyla Olson, MN Recovery Corps

Joseph Vitt, Promise Fellows

Jeannine Christensen, MN Math Corps


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Social and Networking Committee- We plan events and activities to connect AmeriCorps members across programs and build a larger AmeriCorps community.

Committee Chair: Constance Taylor, Minnesota Association for Volunteer Administration

Kate Matusinec, Minnesota GreenCorps

Joe McLean, MN Reading Corps

Nkaujcoob Vang, College Possible

Morgan Bartlett, College Possible

Katie Carlson, City of St. Paul


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Training and Education Committee- We plan professional development and education opportunities to empower AmeriCorps members and the Council to better serve their communities.

Kritika Singh, MN Campus Compact

Sophie Haire, Community Technology Empowerment Project

Meseret Bekele, Public Allies Twin Cities

Devin Mayfield, Community Technology Empowerment Project

Allison Marie Gooley, Promise Fellows

Kelly McCollow, City of Lakes AmeriCorps


Ambassadors- We’re AmeriCorps members who support the Council in publicizing its efforts to their perspective programs and promote the service of the Council and AmeriCorps program across the state.



Member Spotlight:

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Meet your fellow AmeriCorps members and the programs they serve with in our monthly member spotlight! This month’s member spotlight is on Constance Taylor, an AmeriCorps VISTA Leader and chair of the ICC’s Social and Networking Committee!

1. What program do you serve for?

I am a VISTA (Volunteers in Service to America) Leader serving at the Minnesota Association for Volunteer Administration (MAVA). MAVA is the one stop shop for volunteer management as far as premier initiatives and volunteer management best practices.

2. What do you do as a VISTA leader?

As the VISTA leader I serve as a peer mentor for the MAVA VISTAs serving in the Twin Cities Area. I also work to monitor the MAVA VISTA program for ways to make it better for the cohort next year.

3. What interested you in serving with AmeriCorps and your specific program?

I was interested in doing service, but not so interested in doing direct service. The AmeriCorps VISTA program is a great way to make a difference as far as improving programming to make nonprofits work more efficiently. It was also a great way to see behind the scenes of how nonprofits work. My goal is to work in the nonprofit sphere. I want to change the way nonprofits work to make them even more inclusive and equitable than they already are.

4. What do you like to do in your free time?

In my free time I read lots and lots of romance novels and I crochet. I love the drama in romance novels, and it's the only genre I consume regularly as far as literature goes. As far as crochet goes, I'm working on increasing my pattern skill base. I've been following a pattern book and so far, I have made some awesome loop scarves.

Thanks, Constance, for being our first spotlight! Do you have someone you’d like to nominate as our next Member Spotlight? Send us your nomination at communications@iccminnesota.org.


Ask an Alum!

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Do you have burning questions like “how did you survive on your stipend?” or “do you have any tips on how to network?” Send them to us and we’ll ask an AmeriCorps Alumni! Their answers will be posted in the following issue of the Public Spirit. Shoot us an email at: communications@iccminnesota.org.


Fun and Free Events

Looking for something fun and free to do this month? We’ve got 7 ideas of things you can do this month that won’t cost you a dime:

See some art at Crossings at Carnegie in Zumbrota, MN. They have a new exhibit that is free and open to the public! There’s an artist’s reception held on Friday, November 16th at 6:00pm where you can meet the artists and look at their art while you munch on appetizers and desserts.

Go to your local Minnesota State Park on November 23rd for Free Park Friday! No vehicle permit is necessary on that day, so you can explore as much as you want. Find a park near you here.

Check out the Secrets of Glensheen in Duluth, MN. In honor of Nerdy November, Glensheen is starting a new series called “The Secrets of Glensheen”. Glensheen Collections Manager, Milissa Brooks Ojibway, will showcase various objects from the Glensheen collection that have been hidden out of sight to visitors. It’s every Wednesday night in November from 7:00-8:00pm and free to attend!

Register to learn some Winter Wisdom- Maplewood’s Nature Center is hosting a Winter Wisdom workshop on December 1st from 1-3 to teach you how to safely enjoy the outdoors in the middle of winter! Register by November 29th to participate!

Visit the SPAM museum in Austin, MN. Admission is free and they’re open every day of the week!

● If you live in the metro area, City Pages posts weekly updates on free things to do over the weekend!

Do you know of more free events happening in your area? Share them with us!

Stay tuned next month for more free things to do, money saving hacks, fun events, and more!