Building Paths for our Student Fellows
Kennedy Fields and Cassy Tweed's stories with our mission, "Entrepreneurship for All."
How do two college students find themselves invited to TEDXFargo, meeting the governor of North Dakota, and fangirling over Josh Duhamel?
Two things: networking and opportunity mindset.
With the ability to find potential in any problem they face and the bravery to ask hard questions to the right people, Cassy and Kennedy’s journey on The Nice Productions Team is hopefully only the beginning to a longer story.
Content Creator and Manager
On a Friday afternoon in September 2020, I bought an overpriced $6.00 coffee and sat down with Sydney Sanford, one of Nice Productions past employees.
I told her something that changed my life for the next year and beyond.
I have so many ideas but I don't know what to do with them.
She smiled and responded, “You should work at The Nice Center.”
My Experience at The Nice Center
When I started working at The Nice Center in October, I discovered that I had joined a team of innovative people. I began working with some of the kindest and most brilliant minds I had met since moving to North Dakota. I had joined a mission that fit my personal values – to bring opportunities to those who might not otherwise be able to access them.
Since then, I have worked at The Nice Center as a content creator and manager. I write blogs – like this one – and post things on Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok. I joined the team to contribure my ability to write, but I stayed because of the growth of innovation and entrepreneurship in North Dakota that I saw The Nice Center be a part of every single day.
One thing that discouraged me, however, was how disconnected I felt to the entrepreneurship environment in Fargo, largely because of COVID-19. As a writer, without inspiration, my writing falls flat.
This changed about a month ago when our team went to TEDXFargo!
TEDXFargo is an independently organized TEDX event that was hosted in Fargo, ND in July 2021. At the event, hosted outdoors in the blazing summer heat and humidity, I listened in awe as speakers from North Dakota came up to the stage and told their stories. That night, I found a world of people who were brilliant, personable, and value-driven – people I aspire to be like. I saw a side of Fargo that I hadn’t yet seen, but wanted to be a part of.
That $6.00 latte I thought I overpaid for in September has paid for itself in ways I couldn’t have imagined at the time.
As a visual arts major with an emphasis in graphic design, I found it very difficult to find a job where I could work part time gaining skills I would use in the real world. So, as a naive junior in college, I enrolled in ENTRE 201: Intro to Entrepreneurship, taught by Scott Meyer.
One afternoon, I got an email inviting me to Nice Day at Renaissance Hall. I made the decision to go on my own to network and get my name on campus. When I arrived, I felt awkward, but I did start to talk to people. I met Dane Johnson and told him that I had graphic design skills. He told me that The Nice Center was hiring an additional graphic designer! I took the leap to join The Nice Team, and I’m glad I did.
My Experience at The Nice Center
The Nice Center is quite possibly the best job I have ever had. I knew I wanted to find a job at NDSU where I could gain graphic design skills and I wanted to work with distributors like those I would work with post-college, in the real world. I then fell in love with the work and with the mission. Though I myself am not an entrepreneur, I am now very passionate about entrepreneurship. Teaching students across North Dakota that they have the power to do anything empowers them!
My position at The Nice Center is nothing short of exciting. As a visual arts major, I create graphics for social media, logos for new events and programs and work on some design aspects for physical kits that are sent out for our Nice Idea program. With all of these tasks, I have learned how to work closely with others, how to communicate with distributors, and what being a team member truly means.
Growing up, I saw the cruel and unfair reality of the world, like I am sure many others have also seen. This realization made me want to work as hard as I could to change the world. Don’t get me wrong, I know I am only one college senior. But working for The Nice Center and helping students learn how to apply the skills of an entrepreneur has been extremely empowering.
Attending TEDXFargo made me realize how strong the entrepreneurship community is in Fargo!
Having the opportunity to go to TedXFargo changed my outlook of both Fargo and the world. TedXFargo showed me that there exists a collection of wonderful humans who care about listening and supporting the new ideas of the future.
When I first came to Fargo, I didn’t think the city itself would have such an amazing heart for supporting the work of others.
Seeing how people came from long and far to be a part of TedXFargo that made me realize that there are collections of people that want to hear the bright ideas of the future no matter where you go.
Innovation and creativity are getting easier to spot in Fargo, ND. The Nice Center proudly participates in many events to make this happen, like TEDXFargo! Our mission of entrepreneurship for all expands every day, starting with our own Nice Productions Student Fellows.
Stay tuned to hear from our Nice Corps Fellows about their on-the-road stories bringing entrepreneurship to North Dakota high schools.