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Colleen Bramhall, 29, recently told an Associated Press reporter, “I used to be the one that was working for the man, the one with the corporate job that was the sellout, and now I think my friends are looking at Accenture in a different light, as a sort of corporate citizen.”
The change in her friends’ opinion of Accenture, and perhaps of corporate America in general, is because of Accenture’s program that lets employees take leave to work on nonprofit projects in developing countries. Bramhall has already been to South Africa and Sri Lanka as a corporate volunteer.
"I'm the only one of all of my friends that works for the same company that they worked for when they graduated from college," she said.
This type of volunteerism, known as skill-based volunteerism or loaned executive programs, is increasing in popularity across corporate America. Many companies see a win-win situation – employees are happy and continue to develop professional and leadership skills, companies are positively contributing to society, and nonprofits are able to better execute their missions.