IEC Intros: Meet Ren Mattson

posted on Monday, December 6, 2021

I came across the Administrative Assistant position with the Iowa Environmental Council randomly while sitting on my parents’ couch in front of my laptop four months into a rather unsuccessful job search. For a moment, I had a thought: “What if I looked for non-profit administration work here in Des Moines…beyond the performing arts?”

Ren Mattson with fluteI graduated May 2021 from the University of Northern Iowa with my B.A. in Performing Arts Management and minors in Spanish and Women & Gender Studies. Post-graduation, I had the opportunity to serve as a marketing and public relations intern with the Des Moines Symphony. When I wasn’t working, I spent most of my time job-hunting, many of the positions I applied for being with symphonies and other performing arts organizations.

My love for music and the performing arts runs deep. I started taking piano lessons at a young age and took up flute in late elementary school. I later started singing and playing ukulele. Until that point, studying music in college was something I didn’t question. It wasn’t until my job search when I really started to wonder if I would ever be able to pursue a career outside of the  performing arts, and if it would be possible with the degree I had received.

Ren Mattson in waterI believe in working for causes that I am passionate about, and the environment is one of them. I have always been an avid environmentalist, and coming across this position with IEC was when I realized just how amazing working with an environmental coalition could be. So I took a chance.

After completely re-working my performing arts-based cover letter, as well as second-guessing myself only a handful of times, I submitted my application materials. I was surprised to hear back about an interview, and then a second interview, and then eventually a job offer. It has been a complete whirlwind, but there is nowhere else I’d rather be and no other cause I’d rather be working for.

  1. iec intros