When Michelle Vargas ’94 chose marketing for her major at Robert Morris University, she probably never imagined that she’d be working with grieving children and families. But an internship opened her eyes to new possibilities and led to a successful career.
Today she works for the Highmark Caring Foundation as a special initiatives associate. In this position she markets the facility in Pittsburgh, the Warrendale/Cranberry area, Erie, and Harrisburg.
“We partner with the funeral directors, schools, and organizations that work with children,” says Vargas, “so they are aware of our services, which are at no cost to grieving families.”
Originally from Pittsburgh, Vargas ended up at RMU after transferring here from Kent State in Ohio. During her senior year she took an unpaid internship at Ohio Valley General Hospital in McKees Rocks in their development department. “I learned that fundraising for a hospital foundation was, in fact, marketing, because you are selling its product.”
That same year she was offered a full-time position with the hospital, where she worked for the next five years before moving on to Holy Family Institute in Pittsburgh for a year. For the last 12 years she has been at the Caring Place.
“That internship really changed my perspective and started me down a successful career path,” she says. “I can’t say enough about what Robert Morris did for me.” ~
Written by Valentine J. Brkich