The 2018 Net Impact Conference offered life-changing
experiences and networking opportunities for Up to Us team leaders and members
in Phoenix, Arizona, Oct. 25 through Oct. 27.
Dylan Lyle, a senior Journalism and Public Relations
Department major at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, took full advantage of this
opportunity and used the networking skills he’s been learning in his department
to make some professional connections. Lyle is a team leader for the Up to Us
competition. He attended the three-day event, which was completely funded by
Net Impact is
a nonprofit membership organization for students and professionals interested
in using business skills in support of various social and environmental causes.
It serves both a professional organization and one of the largest student
organizations among MBAs in the world. The program started in 1993 as a small
network of MBA students who wanted to make a difference. Today, Net Impact is
an entirely interdisciplinary network of students and professionals across the
globe driving impact on campuses, throughout their careers and in their local
arriving in Phoenix, he settled in at the Renaissance Hotel, where he and his
roommate attended their first training seminar. It simple team building and
understanding exercises, and everyone shared a few personal experiences regarding
how they discovered the Up to Us program.
had learned about the program in his Intro to Public Relations class last
spring. Dr. Michele Papakie, his professor, had involved the class in a
campaign that spread awareness of the national debt. After that, Lyle was
hooked. Papakie suggested he serve as a team leader for the organization in the
At the conference, Lyle met the founder of the Green
Bronx Machine, Stephen Ritz. The Green Bronx Machine is a non-profit powerhouse
out of South Bronx, NYC. He is an educator and administrator who
believes that students shouldn’t have to leave their communities to live,
learn, and earn in a better one. He is expanding his organization
to 22 states next year and will be employing hundreds of people. Lyle intends
to be one of them.
was a keynote speaker at the conference and remembered Lyle and his elevator
speech, including his name.
delivered the most inspiring presentation I have ever seen,” Lyle said. “After
the presentation, during a photo opportunity, Ritz got my attention across the
crowd and said, ‘Duncan Lyle, Kane, Pa., how are you?”
Another highlight of the trip was when Lyle and others
decided to go out in the desert at 6 a.m. to explore and climb the mountains before
the team building and leadership seminar began at 8:30 a.m.
He returned home on a flight from Phoenix to Pittsburgh
with a layover in Salt Lake City, Utah. On the way, he was seated beside house
music producer, Alex Cruz. Lyle plans to do some promotional work with him in
Back at IUP, Lyle hosted two events sponsored by Up to Us
in the Humanities and Social Sciences building lobby. They were both successful
despite the hurried nature of students rushing to classes, combined with inclement
weather. Lyle’s next step is to establish an official Up to Us chapter at IUP,
so it is easier for other students to get involved.
For more information, contact Dylan Lyle at D.S.Lyle@iup.edu.