Pictured (left to right): David Murano, Jennifer LaVine, Valeria Wells, and Keith Schenone. Murano, LaVine, and Schenone are Rensselaer MBA students at Sikorsky, while Wells is the chief marketing communications and development officer for INROADS. Attending the final briefing virtually—but not present for this photo—were Adrienne Thomas, INROADS development and alumni associate, and Norma-Ester Medina, a Sikorsky MBA student as well as an INROADS alumna.

Rensselaer students taking classes on location at Sikorsky Aircraft, in Stratford, Conn., completed the MBA program with a briefing on their final Practicum in Management project. James Stodder, professor of practice in the Hartford Department of the Lally School of Management, oversaw the group project.

The project selected by the students was to set up a donor database for INROADS, a nonprofit founded in 1970 to recruit and train underrepresented college students for internships with U.S. corporations. INROADS connects these undergraduates with internship opportunities that lead to full-time employment in those same corporations.

INROADS has a large set of corporate and individual contributors, but needed a better way to focus that data on its fundraising mission. The new database created by the students should help to meet that goal by organizing data on some 500 donors over the last four years.

“The efforts and work product of the MBA students is invaluable to INROADS in our efforts to efficiently focus on cultivating donors with the greatest capacity to support our mission. With this new data, our organization is poised to leverage limited resources to generate higher returns on time invested,” said Valeria Wells, chief development officer at INROADS Inc., and the primary fundraiser for the organization.

Past projects completed by Rensselaer MBA students have benefitted Dress For Success Hartford, Distressed Children & Infants International, Community Partners in Action, and Habitat for Humanity.