The University of Iowa

Catching up with Katarina Newcamp

Friday, March 18, 2022

Katarina Newcamp was a Summer Research Associate at the Larned A. Waterman Iowa Nonprofit Resource Center in the summer of 2020. Recently, Katarina updated us on her activities since graduating from the University of Iowa.



Cedar Rapids, Iowa 


Apart from your work at the LAWINRC, tell us a bit about your time at the University of Iowa such as your major, groups in which you were involved, internships and so on.

I graduated in May of 2021 with my B.A. in Political Science and minors in Spanish and German. While at Iowa, I was a member of the ImmUnity Campaign, a global health advocacy student organization that partners with the UN Foundation. I was also an active participant in the Trihawks Club Triathlon Team for all four years of college. Outside of extracurriculars, I was a remote intern and student researcher for several different U.S. Department of State initiatives, an undergraduate research fellow with the University of Iowa Public Policy Center, a legislative intern for the office of Congressman Dave Loebsack in Iowa City, in addition to several on- and off-campus jobs throughout my four years. I was also able to study abroad in the Fall of 2019 in Seville, Spain! 


Tell us more specifically about your association with the LAWINRC such as your role here, projects you worked on, and your team members.

I was a Summer Research Associate in the summer of 2020. I worked with a team of three other students consisting of one other undergrad student and two law students. I enjoyed working with the other research associates and learning more about law school and their undergraduate paths. Though we worked virtually, we got to know each other very well and worked on a lot of projects together. Our main focus for the summer was updating and rewriting sections of the Iowa Nonprofit Handbook, making it more relevant, visually appealing, and digitally compatible. In addition to this project, I cleaned data and worked on visualizations showing the impact of the nonprofit sector in Iowa, to be used for advocacy.


Tell us about your post-graduate activities such as your current position, the organization you are working for, and where you are located.

It's my first-year post-grad, and I am currently a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant at the University of Prishtina in Kosovo (a Delaware-sized country in the Western Balkans). In this role, I work part-time as a TA in second- and fourth-year undergraduate classes in the English department of my university. In addition to teaching, I volunteer with a local nonprofit organization that focuses on youth development and partners with the U.S. Embassy Prishtina and local NGOs to provide English programming for the Afghan population currently transiting through Camp Bondsteel. I really enjoy teaching as well as the flexibility of the grant to pursue other opportunities in the community, and the year has been a healthy mix of fun as well as challenges that come with living in a new place. 


How has your summer research work fit in to where you are today?

 As a result of my work at the LAWRINC, I have a much deeper and more well-rounded understanding of nonprofit operations. As a summer research associate, I gained a deep understanding of the nonprofit principles and practices in nearly every U.S. state, allowing me to understand how successful nonprofits operate. I was also able to work on a consultation with a large Iowa nonprofit that showed an interesting perspective on how to assist an organization that is struggling to meet the needs of both its staff and the community. Now, volunteering at a nonprofit and looking at potentially working in the nonprofit sector after my Fulbright Grant, I am much better poised to understand the unique needs of this sector. 


Share any advice you have for current University of Iowa students.

 Say yes to diverse opportunities and activities! I had no intention of attending law school when I applied for a position at the LAWRINC, but I learned so much about the variety of career paths that a law degree can prepare you for and came to understand nonprofit operations much more clearly. Similarly, my involvement with the triathlon team was unrelated to my major or career development, but I made some of my best friends on the team and got to travel around the country to race!


What’s next for you?

That's the big question! After my Fulbright Grant ends in June of 2022, I am hoping to work in program implementation specifically related to conflict resolution and/or migration. I am excited to start my career and continue learning more about the field.