Sheila Otto

Trinity Fellow Class of 2017

Graduate Program: MBA

Undergraduate Degree, Institution: B.A. in International Affairs (concentration in Economics), Marquette University

Trinity Nonprofit Agency: Alliance for Strong Families and Communities, Civic Engagement Research Coordinator

Full-time Service Experience, Years Served, Location:

St. Joseph Worker Program, 2011-2012, Mineapolis, MN

Full-time Service Experience:

I wanted to participate in the St. Jospeh Worker program because I wanted to learn about the realities of growing up in the Twin Cities that were different from my own experiences. I knew about the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondalet (that ran the program) and their incredible mission of "loving God and the dear neighbor without distinction" and wanted to be a part of their impactful community. I also very much appreciated the small size of the program and the emphasis on female leadership developement. I learned how to be a better leader that year, what it means to be a strong female, and how to be a better citizen in any community in which I am a part of.

Trinity Fellowship Experience:

I was very interested in the Trinity Program because of the ability to obtain a master's degree, while also continuing to gain valuable professional experiences. The work placement component was the main reason for drawing me back to Milwaukee. I appreciated my experience at the Alliance SO MUCH and I felt it was a perfect complement to my class work.

I came to Trinity with the desire to take my professional career to the next step by learning about how different sizes, styles, and types of human-serving nonprofits operate. I feel as though my business academic experiences, combined with my work with the Alliance has provided me with a rich learning opportunity. However, something I did not anticipate was the growth and understanding I would come away with about the nonprofit sector as a whole and an enhanced understanding of the history, role, and future of the sector within our society. I feel that I am a better professional with this enhanced understanding of the nonprofit sector. It was a learning curve to operate on such a macro-level at the Alliance, but once I was able to learn to function in those spaces, my knowledge and ability to learn improved greatly.

Plans After Graduation:

I am planning to mover back to the Twin Cities after graduation. It is bittersweet to leave Milwaukee, but it feels right to be moving closer to my family.

Current Position:

Program Associate, Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation

Trinity Fellows Class

Quick Links


Carole Ferrara, Director
(414) 288-5861

Carolyn Swabek, Assistant Director
(414) 288-0637

Peggy Mead, Program Assistant
(414) 288-5473