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Nonprofit professionals/those who have gone back to school or changed careers, give me advice! Here’s my situation:

1. I’ve been working in the low end of nonprofit administration for about 4 years, ever since I’ve graduated college.

2. I’ve been at my current job at ABC Nonprofit a few months shy of 2 years. It is a great job and I’m totally satisfied with the pay, conditions, and my supervisor, who is great. It’s given me tons of opportunities and room to grow. The only problem is it is a small nonprofit without room for growth in my department, and thinking about being an admin for the rest of the life seems boring and unsatisfying.


3. I want to go to law school. I just took the LSAT and did not tell my boss about it, but some coworkers know.

4. I also would like to get a assistant or office manager job in the legal field to test the waters before I commit thousands of dollars and 3 years of my life to law school.

5. I just saw a great position advertised for a legal assistant at XYZ Corporation. I started getting my resume and cover letter together immediately.

6. One of the board members for ABC Nonprofit works in the legal department at XYZ Corporation. With my husband’s encouragement, I reached out to the board member who works for XYZ for advice on law school/ “other opportunities.” We have an appointment to talk about a month from now.


Here are my questions:

A) Did I make a mistake setting a lunch with a board member without informing my boss or the Executive Director? Suddenly it feels like I am going behind their backs.


B) Is there anything I can tell this board member in confidence? Namely, that I am applying for a job at XYZ? I don’t necessarily want to tell my bosses at ABC that I’m looking for other jobs, but it doesn’t seem right to ask this board member to keep it a secret.

C) Should I tell my bosses I took the LSAT/I’m applying for schools? I would not attend until Fall 2018 or even later. I’d be happy working at ABC until then.


D) Should I tell my bosses I am applying for a job at XYZ, or that I am looking for other opportunities, or that I want to change careers?

Overall, I’m just struggling so much with what level of transparency is appropriate, boundaries between nonprofit staff and board, what kind of confidentiality to expect from whom, if any, and the fear of having my bosses write me off for promotions/salary increases once they know I’m not an ABC lifer.


Appreciate any advice or perspective you can give. Thank you!

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