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Carlson 4 Community gives back to the Twin Cities

C4C chose Cookie Cart as their local beneficiary this year, helping youth within the community.
Image by Sophie Eydis
MBA Charity Auction at McNamara Alumni Center on Saturday, Feb. 10.

Carlson 4 Community (C4C) promotes volunteerism and community involvement within the Twin Cities by creating ways for Carlson School of Management graduate students to give back.

C4C held its annual Carlson MBA Charity Auction 0n Saturday at the McNamara Alumni Center, which benefited Cookie Cart, a non-profit organization.

Mano Wunnava, the president of C4C, said every year the club picks one non-profit organization in the Twin Cities and works with them to raise money throughout the academic year, culminating in the charity auction.

“The Carlson School of Management’s tagline is ‘business as a force for good,’ and our club helps people do things in the line of this,” Wunnava said.

With each year’s beneficiary, C4C supports them through volunteering and raising money, Wunnava added.

According to Jennifer Staley, Cookie Cart’s director of advancement, the organization is a non-profit serving 200 youth per year in the Twin Cities between 15 and 18 years old.

Staley said Cookie Cart not only offers jobs to youth, but also gives kids a classroom.

“We teach them financial literacy, we write resumes with them and we have community conversations,” Staley said.

Staley said Cookie Cart helps kids with food insecurity as well as finding jobs and housing.

“It’s been so great having C4C members volunteer with us,” Staley said. “They get what our kids’ needs are, and it’s been really cool to see those relationships develop.”

Wunnava said C4C will cater to what the non-profit wants, and they do not follow a certain pattern in the ways they help.

“This year they wanted us to come to the bakery, engage with some team building and pack some cookies with the kids,” Wunnava said.

Wunnava added C4C helps kids from Cookie Cart with resume building, cover letters and practicing how to pitch themselves.

Cathal Moroney, a member of C4C, said kids from Cookie Cart recently came to campus for a tour of Carlson.

“A lot of these people are from disadvantaged or underrepresented backgrounds,” Moroney said. “Being able to show them the tangible outcome of the work that they’re doing in the investment in their resumes and career building made them really excited and happy.”

Moroney added it has been incredible having Cookie Cart as C4C’s beneficiary this year.

“The first day that we were introduced to them, everyone was just amazed that this organization exists,” Moroney said. “I am really happy they were selected this year.”

Mei Chew, an MBA student who attended the auction, said she was looking forward to seeing the whole thing take place.

“My friends have been hard at work planning this event, so I just really want to support them and support the cause,” Chew said.

As of Sunday, C4C is still calculating how much total money they raised, according to Wunnava.

Alexis Robertson, a member of C4C, added seeing everybody come together for the auction was special.

“I hope that this relationship lasts a long time,” Staley said. “Not because we expect big money all the time, but we would love to stay in communication with them because they are just dynamic.”

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