UWSD Affinity Groups: Networking with a Purpose

Written By: Kiva Barry, Marketing Manager, and Memo Ramirez, Marketing Coordinator

UWSD Affinity Groups: Networking with a Purpose  

How are you connecting in and outside of your organization? What avenues are you using to build your professional development and make an impact on your community? UWSD is here to help you! United Way of San Diego County’s Emerging Leaders and Women United affinity groups are a great way to connect with like-minded peers across various industries while also providing a way to give to back to those in our community who need support most. Typical networking groups often lack a philanthropic aspect, but UWSD’s affinity groups allow members to network with a purpose, in turn creating a long-lasting impact on both members and the broader community. We believe that we all rise when we lift others.  

Networking can be a daunting task, but UWSD’s affinity groups offer a welcoming, enriching, and fun environment for all current and prospective members. Each event is an opportunity to make new connections, learn about other organizations, and become a champion for philanthropic causes that create a deeper impact across San Diego County. 

Our Emerging Leaders network, which focuses on volunteerism and professional development, delivers on its mission to turn today’s members into tomorrow’s leaders. Emerging Leaders’ events provide opportunities for professionals to foster strong relationships with peers across non-profit and private sectors in industries such as manufacturing, insurance, education, engineering, social services, marketing, and more.  Past events have included professional skill-building workshops taught by San Diego business leaders, as well as tours of The Rady Shell at Jacobs Park and the San Diego International Airport. As a member, you are given an inside look into San Diego businesses and access to the professionals that lead them!  

Women United currently represents more than 70 members across a variety of industries and sectors, offering meaningful philanthropic opportunities to learn, lead, network, and support other like-minded professional women. Whether taking advantage of local volunteer opportunities or fundraising for a college scholarship, members experience the first-hand impact that they make when uniting together. Women United members not only raise funds, they also determine how the Women United Fund dollars will be allocated to make the most impact on helping women and children here in San Diego County. In 2022, Women United allocated $150k to support 10 high school seniors with scholarships, seed funding for UWSD’s STEAM to Careers programming, and a two-year partnership with Armed Services YMCA-Camp Pendleton to support Operation Little Learners. 

Emerging Leaders and Women United offer high-quality activities such as workshops and programming to enhance professional skills and one-of-a-kind experiences that leave members with a fresh perspective, and often, new friendships. The value from both organizations extends beyond attending networking events – both new and long-standing members can get involved in purposeful charitable work, support their professional ambitions, and develop close personal connections outside of their existing social circle.   

By subscribing to the UWSD newsletters and following UWSD on social media, you can stay up-to-date on all upcoming events and opportunities. You can learn more about Women United and Emerging Leaders and join them at one of their next events.