Shannon Daley ’15, New Development Coordinator at Maine Behavioral Healthcare
How many high school students know that they want to be fundraisers? “I don’t think there’s many of us,” said Shannon Daley ’15, Keene State’s Annual Giving Coordinator until recently, when she moved on to become the development coordinator for the Maine Behavioral Health Care in Portland.
When Daly was in high school, she volunteered for several community organizations and did a lot of fundraising for them, and enjoyed it. When she told her parents that’s what she wanted to do with her life, they, as parents are wont to do, told her that she’d never get a job as a fundraiser. They told her to become a teacher instead.
Dutifully, she went off to college to become a teacher. Unhappy where she started, she transferred to Keene State. “I absolutely loved it, but I learned that since I’d transferred, I wouldn’t be able to graduate in four years,” Daley recalled. “I decided that I couldn’t afford a fifth year, so I’d just get my math degree. I decided that, if I wanted to teach, I could get my certification later. And then I remembered that I never wanted to be a teacher, I wanted to go into fundraising, so I applied for an internship in the Development office on campus, got it, and continued to work there. I was was first hired as a data analyst, going through all campaign data and doing the math. I’ve been a phonathon caller. Then I needed an extra credit to graduate, so I did a communication internship for Development, writing appeals and things like that.
“I really enjoyed being at Keene State—it felt like a home. The faculty in the Math Department were fantastic, and when I came over to the Development Office to work, everyone was also fantastic. There’s a great support system. Everyone wanted to see me succeed. I wouldn’t have my new job if it weren’t for Keene. I wouldn’t have my math degree, and the Maine clinic hired me for my math skills, because I can analyze their data, plus all the experience I gained here as a fundraiser.”