Debora Aponte

MPA in Public & Nonprofit Management & Policy - 2016

Chief Compliance Officer and Grants Manager
Unidos Por Puerto Rico
Debora Aponte

Describe your experience as a Wagner student?

My experience as a Wagner student was very diverse. I was involved with Wagner’s Stonewall Policy Alliance as its Vice Chair and I had the chance to organize NYU’s first Graduate LGBTQ Student Conference. I also had a chance to impact the greater NYU community as a Senator at-Large representing queer and latinx students on campus.

How did your Wagner experience prepare you professionally for what you are doing today?

Today I’m back home in Puerto Rico contributing to disaster-relief efforts post-hurricane Maria. I am tasked with evaluating proposals from different local and international nonprofits that want to develop projects in Puerto Rico. My education at NYU Wagner was crucial in getting the skills I needed to work in the nonprofit sector. I lead a team that recommends these proposals to our Board of Directors and I also ensure that all proposals comply with local and federal laws. Wagner, through its classes and events, offered me unparalleled access to many experts in the fundraising and philanthropic sectors.

What are the advantages of the Wagner alumni network?

There are so many advantages! I’ve gotten a few interviews from job opportunities shared through our listserv. I’ve also met fellow Wagnerds through alumni events in different cities like DC. My current mentors are both Wagner alumni that I’ve met through alumni events. I’ve also gotten the chance to mentor other incoming students and share valuable career advice.