2011 Distinguished Alumni Award: Nicole M. Lindsay

Nicole Lindsay is Executive Director of New York Needs You (NYNY), a start-up non-profit which supports first-generation college students in realizing their college and career ambitions. Ms. Lindsay joined NYNY in September 2009 as the first staff person.  Now the organization has a six-person staff and an operating budget of $1.2 million. NYNY closes the opportunity gap through the most intensive career mentorship program in New York City, enabling high-potential, first-generation college students to realize their college and career aspirations. NYNY is the only non-profit in NYC that focuses exclusively on first-generation college students. The primary components of the NYNY curriculum are life planning, career development, and community leadership. The first class of 50 NYNY Fellows began the two-year program in June 2010 and recruitment for the second class is underway. Previously, she was the Vice President of Talent Development at Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT), overseeing all program-related activities.

Ms. Lindsay earned her B.S. in business administration and graduated as an Honors Scholar from the University of Connecticut in 1996. She attended UConn with her twin brother, Anthony McKinney ’97 and her favorite pastime during her time at UConn was cheering for him and her friends on the Husky football team. She then enrolled in a joint J.D./M.B.A. program at the University of Virginia. Ms. Lindsay received a J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, in 2000 and an M.B.A. from the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business in 2000. Upon graduation, she joined Wachovia Bank as a Corporate Finance Associate and later moved into Community Development Finance as a program manager. In 2003, Nicole became the Associate Director of Admissions and Student Affairs at the Yale School of Management (SOM), overseeing minority and women’s admissions and diversity student affairs. She was instrumental in diversifying the applicant pool and in increasing the number of underrepresented minorities that matriculated at the SOM.

While at the SOM, Ms. Lindsay also served as a coach for MLT’s Career Prep program, aiding eight college juniors in their career exploration and development process. She later managed M.B.A. recruiting initiatives for Goldman Sachs at the Wharton School, Chicago Graduate Schools of Business (GSB), Kellogg  at Northwestern, and the Tuck School at Dartmouth before joining MLT full-time as director of the Career Prep program in June 2006. In February 2007, Ms. Lindsay became Director of the Career Prep and M.B.A. Prep programs for MLT and in July 2008 was promoted to Vice President.

Ms. Lindsay serves on the UVA Darden School Alumni Board, the Board of Directors of New York Chapter of the UConn Alumni Association, on the Advisory Board of MOVE, an NYC-based high school mentoring program, and is licensed to practice law in Connecticut and Georgia. She is a 2010 recipient of the Rebirth Renaissance Award for Perpetuating Excellence and Leading Generation Now from the New York Urban League Young Professionals.

She is married to Josiah Lindsay.