Partners & Impact

The UMAC Difference

Jeff Wig and Diane Hagerman standing in front of an if Initiative Foundation sign which reads Powering Possible
Jeff Wig, Initiative Foundation, and Diane Hageman, UMAC fellow

We have before us a tremendous opportunity to redeploy the skills and experience of encore adults for the greater good.

Boomers (born 1946-64) are leaving their career jobs at the rate of 10,000 a day, and GenXers are close behind. Some are recareering at midlife to better align with priorities at this stage of life. Others seek alternatives to outdated models of retirement. For the majority of encore adults, work in some capacity is an expectation, preference and need.

During the spring semester, fellows volunteer on a project or serve as a “midtern” - an intern at midlife. Fellows help nonprofits expand capacity and deepen impact in addressing our community’s pressing needs. Fellows gain insights and practical experience to redeploy their skills and abilities in new ways.

UMAC offers benefits to individuals, Nonprofits, and the business/corporate communities.

Community Partners

Here are some examples of partners that have hosted UMAC fellows.

Twin Cities Habitat for Humanity logo
Second Harvest Heartland Logo - text with stylized grain forming a circle.
AARP Experience Corps
US House of Representatives Seal with text reading US Congressman Dean Phillips Serving the 3rd District of Minnesota
Initiative Foundation
Be the Match
Finnovation Lab
Luthern Social Service of Minnesota Logo
City of Red Wing Logo
Mary's Pence Logo reading Funding Women, Changing Lives.

Nonprofit/Social Sector

Photograph of Carl Adamek and Shelby Vraspier standing in front of an A Brush with Kindness project where a house is being painted.
Carl Adamek and Shelby Vraspier

UMAC fellows bring relevant experience in key areas such as marketing, IT, HR, operations, and management. Over their careers, encore adults developed people skills, organizational management, project leadership, and relational skills that are needed in the nonprofit sector.

UMAC connects the dots between helps nonprofit organizations, social enterprises, and public institutions strategically tap talent to expand capacity and deepen impact in addressing our community’s pressing needs.

As they deepen their understanding of their host organization’s mission, purpose, and impact, fellows may also form lasting ties, continuing to contribute beyond the fellowship semester.


Photograph of room full of people seated at various tables talking to each other.

The aging workforce presents challenges and opportunities for corporations facing employee retirements and transitions in leadership. As they plan for transitions, employers need accurate projections and concrete plans around succession, knowledge transfer, recruitment, training, and mentoring next generation talent.

The urgency is real. By 2024, one out of every four workers will be 55 and older.

UMAC can help

University of Minnesota Advanced Careers (UMAC) is a "gap year" for leaders as they transition from career jobs into what's next. UMAC prepares leaders for new roles and identities, connects them with nonprofits to address community needs, and offers inroads to the richness of the University of Minnesota environment as corporate leaders explore their encores.

For corporations, UMAC offers benefits for workforce planning (exit runways, time for knowledge transfer, transitioning of responsibilities), investment in communities (adding talent to charitable giving efforts), employee relations (graceful exits for valued employees, reputation as a great place to work), recruitment of talent (building brand identity with high potential university students), and cutting edge research and scholarship (expanding knowledge and connections with researchers and thought leaders at a leading university).

UMAC builds on research findings of Minnesota employers and their approaches to engaging an aging workforce (Moen, Kojola and Schaefers, 2017).