JU grad Susan Brodersen has turned her volunteer work into much more at the Gabriel House of Care on the campus of Mayo Clinic Florida in Jacksonville. Wave Weekly caught up with Brodersen, who walked at 2012 Commencement and graduated in 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in economics and minors in history, art history, international studies and English.
Tell us about your work since leaving JU.
I’m the community outreach and volunteer coordinator for Gabriel House, a small non-profit hospitality house offering low-cost housing for cancer and transplant patients while they are in the Jacksonville area for treatment and testing.
How did you link up with the house?
I started here as a volunteer two years ago and got my first job with Gabriel House during my senior year at JU. Six months later I was promoted to my current position.
Can you describe what you do?
I manage an army of about 200 volunteers who run the day-to-day operations in our house. I’m a representative for Gabriel House in the community, often attending fairs and events to promote who we are and what we do. I also reach out to companies and work with our development staff on events for the house, which can be anything from having a company prepare a meal for our guests to having them become a sponsor for our golf tournament in the fall.
Any professors or others here who influenced you?
Yes, Cheryl Sowder, Janet Haavisto, Elizabeth Porter, Walker Blanton, Sandra Dean and Devan Coughlin.
What do you do in your spare time?
Outside of work I am traveling and getting ready to attend graduate school in the fall.
Where will you be continuing your schooling?
I’ll be pursuing a master’s degree in museum studies in Glasgow, United Kingdom.
How did JU prepare you for the real world?
I would say that the Career Services department was very instrumental in getting me ready to enter into the business world. Also, every organization that I was a part of gave me something that I was able to take with me into the “real world.”