Tag Archives: purpose

Community Service

As part of the LAS protocol I need to 30 hours of volunteer work. I had many great experiences this year through volunteer avenues. I was elected Food Chair for Up All Night. Up All Night is an free annual event that provides an alternative Friday night to people to enjoy food, games, and more! From late fall to the event in March we would have an one hour long meeting every Sunday and three hours of office hours every week, until the event. Also, I was elected the Pre-Registration Chair for the RPL Job Fair. Here we would have an hour long meeting every Monday from the beginning of the year to the event in February, as well as arranging all registered vendors on my own time. These are just a few of my larger volunteer experiences, but there were many more from spending time at a nursing home, volunteering at a Beef Dinner Fundraiser, Mount Pleasant Park Clean-up, etc.. My favorite volunteer involvement was being a Volleyball coach for 4th and 5th graders though Mount Pleasant Recreation. Every Thursday we would have practice 7:00-8:00 pm and on every Sunday we would have games at 2:00 pm. Their season lasted from September to December.

Being a volleyball coach was very influential not only for the participants, but for myself. I had to learn how to be an effective leader to an age group I was not use to, 4th and 5th graders. Also, I had to learn how to manage them through a sport, including how to keep them focused, what activities were age appropriate, and how to challenge them. It taught me a lot about my leadership and helped me become more well-rounded as a leader. As much as it taught, I used the experience to try to positively impact the players. These children are very easy to influence and I wanted to be a positive role model to them. When they were hard on themselves I gave them positivity and advice that could be relevant in all life situations. I wanted to be a positive role model in their life in case they did not have that at home. It only takes one person to be a role model in someones life and make an impact on them and I wanted to be that person. My favorite memory was when all the players laughed at me when I would say y’all. They all thought it was country and they would mock me in a country accent. Even though they laughed and thought it was funny, I used that experience to introduce them to inclusive language and my efforts to watch what I say so I do not discriminate or offend anyone. I believe that just by introducing it to them will leave an impact on them to maybe adapt a better vocabulary and be open to inclusivity because of me. Being a part of molding these child’s lives is so powerful and inspiring because of the opportunity to shape the leaders of the future.

I am going to continue to apply to be a coach through the Recreation Department. I will also pursue being a role model for the youth because I can see the impact it has made through being a coach. Overall, I have grown a passion for community service and will continue to do so throughout my life. Community service can help in small or big ways to make a difference in the world. I have so much love and service to give to others, and it is not going to stop here.

 

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Morey Courts where practice and games were held
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SOC 221 Social Problems

As part of the Leadership Scholarship it is required to take a sociology class. Through this class I learned about social issues in our world today. I found this class to be very relevant as leader. As leaders we want to change the world, but to do that we first must know the inequalities and problems being experienced. The class uncovered injustices and revealed answers to how we got to where we are and the present prejudices holding us back.

The class made a huge impact on myself. It open my eyes to injustices and why things are the way they are. It was intriguing to learn about different social classes and the perceptions within each. I found that it is important to understand that a society is so complex and it is are duty to educate ourselves on the complexities and problems in the world. If we are not educated we lack an understanding that can help change these injustices, as well as mindsets and prejudices that sometimes put us in these situations. For the final project in the class we had to research a social problem and I choose to do mine on hunger in the United States. For a country so bountiful it was surprising to see that millions of people had food insecurities. Also, I found that 1 in 5 children are food insecure. Children who do not have choose or much of a voice to change their circumstances. My concerns were how in the U.S. can we see people starving, as well as obese. How did we get both extremes. Learning about social problems was very eye opening and the class has inspired and impacted me to stay educated and aware of the world’s problems.

For the future I will use what I learned to stay enlightened about social problems, as well as the subconscious prejudices I might even have. I will continue to educate myself on social problems and what I can do to help the cause. I believe small acts towards many people can change the world. And this class gave me the knowledge and passion to do so.

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RSO Reflection 2: Flint Active Crisis Team and Service

The Flint Active Crisis Team and Service is an organization that assists the community of Flint through service trips. Flint, MI has been without clean water since April of 2014. That is what piloted the creation of this organization. As a freshman I was able to be a site leader and a volunteer through a few of the Flint trips and from there I knew I wanted to make a difference in the city of Flint. The trips taken have ranged from medical trips to trips dedicated on blight. Some of the work done is cleaning up homes, parks, or public areas and restoring them for beautification efforts, as well as having a safe places for community members to enjoy. As well as donating water to local churches to pass out.

This year I was on the executive board of F.A.C.T.S., as well as preparing to be vice president. Holding this position I got to see behind the scenes on how to make a Flint trip happen. It is a lot of hard work, but the hard work is easier when there is so many people willing to help the cause. We partnered with local organizations to help place where we serve and what service we did. The planning process took a lot of effort because it included promoting the event, registering participants and site leaders, staying within a budget, planning the logistics of day, feeding and providing a shirt for everyone, having training, and much more. The day of the trip we did not get the amount of volunteers we wanted. However, it was okay because I knew that if one life can be changed because of the trip it was worth it. These trips change the lives of those we serve, as well as the participants. I can speak from experience that it changed my life when I attended as a participant. Being engulfed in an area of need and seeing those hurting in an area is eye opening. It leaves an impact on you to do more, be more to serve others in the world. As we unloaded the buses after the trip you could tell people were grateful for the experience, and like it did for me left an impact on them. But what we do in Flint is also important because they need help and our service can help change lives, too. As we were going to our next service sight we gave water out to random people outside and the gratefulness expelled from them was heartbreaking. These people should not have to struggle for a life necessity. I am proud of the work being done to help serve Flint and inspire others to not only serve Flint but to have greater compassion, gratitude, and love in life.

Continuing beyond the trip I want to educate others on the problems Flint is facing as well as inspire others to create change. I want to pursue serving Flint to enhance my leadership and event planning skills, as well as spread my love to community in need. I have found that with love many things can be accomplished and I will use that ideology in life. I will lead with passion and love to make a difference not only in Flint, but in the world.

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RSO Reflection: Rotaract

Rotaract is a service organization I continue to be a part of in my college career. Being elected Social Chair for this year I was able to implement new ideas and grow my leadership skills through the organization. To learn more about Rotary visit my previous blog post What is Rotaract?

Previously, the social chair was responsible for icebreakers and socials to bond the club. Also, as an e-board member I had say in what fundraisers, socials, advertising events Rotaract did. As I took over the position I used my leadership skills and event planning knowledge to take more roles as a social chair. I volunteered to create, enhance, and run the annual state conference. This is annual conference where all Michigan Rotaracts are invited to attend. I had never attended one previously, but I was filled in on the general scope of what they were. I wanted to amp it up and infuse the conference with fun leadership activities.

I was able to produce a fantastic event, as well as learned and received many valuable experiences. I had to create a conference from scratch being that I was using a whole new concept. From there I learned on how to manage a team to execute my vision. Also, I gained more public speaking skills being the emcee of the conference. The event gave me confidence in my leadership and event planning skills because I was able to take an idea and recreate it into something beautiful. Everyone enjoyed the leadership activities and it allowed many Rotaract clubs to network and build stronger relationships with others. Moving forward I am excited to continue to use my new ideas to enhance our old traditions, as well as inspire and enlighten others through my leadership skills.

Beyond the conference I was able to be a part of great things that our club did that is illustrated below. I was able to promote Rotaract at main stage and excite others to serve the world through our service organization. I was given the opportunity to lead leadership icebreakers in general meetings to get to know new and old members and unify our organization. Once more I was able to emcee and host the annual conference. My favorite parts were our service opportunities like making tie blankets to donate, making Valentine crafts for the nursing home, delivering the cards and spending an afternoon at the nursing home, volunteering at the Rotary beef dinner fundraiser, and many more not pictured. Also, pictured below I was able to promote our annual dodge ball tournament by being interviewed at local radio stations. This was an incredible opportunity to share Rotaract, as well as enhance my speaking skills.

All these experiences have helped me grow as a leader, as well as instill passion for service into me. I want to continue to share my passion for service to others and continue to be a part of such a great organization as I enter my second year as Social Chair. I have many more ideas and I cannot wait for them to put in action.

 

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Promoting Rotaract at Mainstage
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Facilitating leadership activities to welcome new members to Rotaract
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Emcee for the Annual Rotaract Conference
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Making tie blankets to donate
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Making Valentine Cards to be handed out at a nursing home
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After passing out Valentine cards we visited with those at the nursing home
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Volunteering at the annual Rotary Beef Dinner

 

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Promoting our fundraiser on the radio
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First annual dodge ball tournament fundraiser
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Annual Doctor Pol speaking engagement and promotion of Rotaract

 

LEAD Team Reflection

As an LAS Scholar a requirement is to be a part of a Lead Team each year. Last year I blogged about my experience on the Grad Ball Lead Team and this year I got the same opportunity to be on that Lead Team, but as the co-chair coordinator of it. As a refresher, Grad Ball is an annual ceremony to recognize the graduating Leadership Advancement and it is required to attend for all scholars. The Lead team is a group of leadership scholars of all classes, that work together to plan the event including: registration, venue, decorations, invitations, and much more.

This opportunity offered me to explore leading a team of leaders, as well as give me more experience in my major of event planning. I was able to enhance my event planning skills by being able to work with a budget and manage a team. I learned a lot about myself as a leader and where I need improve through this opportunity. I found that my strengths are creativity and being proactive. The flexibility to make this event unique, as well as make a theme allowed me to be creative. Also, I found that being proactive and working on things before they necessarily needed to be done was very beneficial in the event planning process. It made the month of be less stressful as well as helped create better organization. Through this process I had a co-chair, Sara Inbody, and I am so happy how well we worked together. It was reassuring to have someone to lean on and have help through this process. We both learned how to manage team and how there is much work to do to become even better managing a team. It was difficult for us to boost morale and encourage people to attend meetings. This made us reevaluate what were doing, as well as more efficient ways to relay information than just having meetings every week. The day of I learned a lot. There was a lot of problem shooting and it tested my leadership. When leading others and having an event it is important to not freak out in times of problems. I made sure I did not let the day of problems affect how I acted. This allowed people not know the problems that were happening and made everyone calm.

For the future this will give me more knowledge and reference when working similar events or managing a team. I have more confidence on managing a team with things I learned through the Grad Ball Lead Team. I will continue to use my strengths and acknowledge my weaknesses and work on strengthening them.  This experience encouraged me to follow my passion of event planning and leadership and to continue to grow to become a better leader and event planner.

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Mentee in LAS
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Grad Ball Program
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Co-chair Sara Inbody
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Olivia Franklin

 

Mentor Reflection

Freshmen year is coming to an end, which means mentee preparation! Through my Leadership Advancement scholarship it means I will be a mentor my sophomore year, to a next years LAS freshmen. In preparation in transforming from a mentee to a mentor we had a session in our leadership class discussing with fellow classmates ideas of how to be a great mentor. I have been so excited for this moment and had taken a lot of thought into what kind of mentor I want to be. Before our mentor workshop in class my ideas about being a mentor were faint, but after I was able to be more confident and reassure myself about how to be a successful mentor. Also, from the workshop I was able to gain a broader perspective from other classmates ideas. The new ideas allows be to have a greater grasp of how to go about certain situations, also with being aware of certain situations I didn’t think about.

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mentee to mentor!

I am so excited about being a mentor because it is an honorable position to have knowing that you are given this opportunity to help them in adjusting to college. Also, no one else can be their mentor, others can be a mentor figure, but you are assigned to a specific person. I am excited to spread my love for CMU and help them try new things, because this is exciting time in our lives. I believe in experiencing as many things as possible in order for them to learn what they like/dislike and broaden their horizons by learning about new things. Not only am I excited to be a mentor, but a friend, too. During the hard times whatever it may be I want my mentee to know that I am there for them and it is okay to not be okay. I want them to know they are not alone.  I am passionate about the things I do and the clubs I am apart of and I want my mentee to experience them and challenge themselves, but also find their own passion at campus.

I am preparing myself to be a mentor by letting go of my mentor in the sense of being less dependable of them. I have to be more independent and self-sufficient in order to be a dependable mentor for my future mentee.  Also, I am brainstorming different ways my mentor made me feel important and an example was sending texts to check in on how I was doing or just sending positive affirmation of saying they were proud of me. Another idea I have is to set a certain time a way to hangout with my mentee, so we can bond and have no distractions. College can be busy and I want to make sure we can have that quality time together. Another thing I loved that my mentor did was she met up with me before school started and that allowed me to ask questions and ease the pre-college nerves. Meeting with her was so helpful and allowed me to go to school confident. I want to provide the same opportunity for my mentee, because I want them to have the confidence and the re-assurance they need. Ultimately, I am going to be a mentor that can adapt to what they need and go out of my way to meet those needs. As, well as be open with them in knowing what they expect from me.

With most new experiences you can only plan so much. I know I will have to learn along the way, but I am not nervous because we will have each other. This kind of thing you can’t completely plan for, except to make sure that you are leading by example and doing things that would exemplify a good role model. Lastly, I super excited to have this bond with another LAS scholar. I hope that my mentee will feel confident and have an easy transition to college through my help. Most importantly, I am excited to have them impact my life. Only the best leaders get into this program and I can not even imagine the incredible talents they will be able to teach teach/inspire me. I hope through this process we will both be able to grow as leaders and be there for each other.

OVERALL, I AM SUPER EXCITED!!!

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LDR 200L Reflection

As my freshmen year is coming to a close it’s astonishing how far I have come. Time is such a funny thing to think about and to even see. You may not notice how certain things each day can change you, but months later you stop and you can see a big difference. From the first day of college to now I faced many new challenges and new experiences that have helped me grow. Reflecting over the year it is interesting to see my transition to being a freshmen mentee in the Leadership program to preparing to be a mentor! Also, this new experience being at college has allowed me the opportunity to find myself and help me figure out what I want my legacy to be. This time in my life is crucial in creating my own brand.

My LDR 200L class has helped me grow as a leader and push me to the place I needed to be. In LDR 200L we learned about many different leadership theories and how they apply to our own lives. Another major idea we discussed in LDR 200L was on how to transition to a mentor and that we needed to be more independent now. My favorite theory we learned about was Servant Leadership.

Servant Leadership began in 1970 by the writings of Robert Greenleaf. This theory identifies that leaders put followers first and embrace growth. This is the only theory that frames the leadership approach by serving others and the idea of altruism. Common characteristics of people that apply servant leadership to their life would be emotional intelligence, strong ethics, high integrity, empowerment skills, empathy, and many more.

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I chose this theory as my favorite because it reflects back to becoming a mentor. I want to be selfless for my mentee. I want to be able to provide anything and everything I can for them. This year my cohort and I realized that next year it is not about us anyone more; the mentees need us now. The idea of centering the importance off of yourself relates back to servant leadership. We must put our own selfish needs to the side and be there for our mentees. I remember how scary it was coming into college and having so many questions, but my mentor helped me through it all. I believe that a mentor’s main goal is to have that servant leadership and help their mentee through their new experience at college.

Becoming a mentor is not the only experience this year that has exemplified servant leadership. Throughout the year I have found that my passion is servant leadership and not just sharing that passion through my mentee. In class we talked about leaving a legacy and that we all are creating one each day. After analyzing one of the assignments in LDR 200L, which was to write about our leadership philosophy; I found what was most important to me and what kind of legacy I want to leave, which brings me back to servant leadership. I have found love for servant leadership through many of the organizations I am now a part of. For example, I am a part of Rotaract, which frames it’s mission and volunteer work around service above self. I appreciate this club very much because it symbolizes what I want my legacy to be. I want to be known for being selfless and giving to others, without expecting anything in return. It is exciting to reflect back in the year and see the strives I have taken in giving to others and using servant leadership to help build the foundation of my legacy. I am going to continue to use my college experience to enhance my servant leadership.

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This year I have also grown in understanding myself and what I want out of life. I learned that I can be a versatile leader. I now know the importance of adjusting my leadership style to each setting by knowing what kind of leader is needed. In general though I have found that I am a spirited leader, which is one that encourages there team and gets them excited about the task. I found a connection between being a spirited leader and using servant leadership and that is you embrace others and work with them. I have a love for people and encouraging them. I can not wait to continue using my spirited style to work towards more of a servant lifestyle.

Additionally, when working with groups in class or in clubs I learned to be more trusting. I came into college wanting to do all the group projects myself and to make sure everything was perfect. My need to make everything perfect denied me the opportunity to work with others and listen to new ideas. I learned it is okay to trust others and that teamwork is crucial for success not only in school, but eventually in the work place, too. I  now try to not let my OCD take over and just have faith in the team. I believe servant leadership is very broad theory and can embody a lot of ideas. Even though the servant leadership means to serve others, I believe it could also include serving others through love in intangible ways like, respect, trust, active listen, and so on. Now that I am aware of my flaw of lack of trust, I can work on it. I believe trust is a sign of love and respect to another person and if I can improve on it I can be a better servant leader.

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Overall, I am proud of what I accomplished this year. I am excited to keep learning and growing here at CMU as I discover myself. I can finally say I am ready to have a mentee! LDR 200L has helped me get there and I cannot wait to share my love and passion onto them.