Community service has been a vital and precious part of my life, especially my time in college. Through the McDonough Leadership Program at Marietta College, I have been given multiple EXCEL Photo 1opportunities to donate my time through programs such as Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washington County, Hunger and Homelessness Week, and the O’Neill Senior Center of Marietta. All of the service organizations I have been a part of approach community from a different perspective, however they all have a common goal: make life better, not for someone, but everyone. We all have a obligation to improve our immediate and greater communities, and I choose to uphold this through my commitment to service.

EXCEL Leadership Workshop - Last year, I began my journey at Marietta College through the Leadership Program’s EXCEL Workshop–I have applied and been accepted to ┬ábe an EXCEL Leader this coming August. Through this short week, I met like-minded individuals as well as those to the contrary, however this mixture of people allowed me to broaden perspectives and improve communication skills. I also learned the importance of service and connected with various science community members.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Washington Co. - Through placement in McDonough, I also made connections with both Big Brothers Big Sisters and the O’Neill Center. With Big Brothers Big Sisters, I continue to serve as a volunteerbbbs recruiter and supervisor. Each year in the initial stages of the program, I interview applicants for “Bigs” (high school-aged mentors) and also get to know the “Littles” (elementary-aged students recommended to the program by parents, teachers, or counselors). Under guidance of the Washington County BBBS representative, I also assist in matching Bigs to Littles. During the active stages of the program, I schedule and prepare interactive learning activities, games, and teach healthy food habits. Seeing relationships develop through all aspects of the program is rewarding, and each member, whether participant or volunteer, leaves with a sense of appreciation and transformation.

Because of my experiences with service, I know that it will remain part of my life. I aspire to work in a community oriented organization where civic responsibility is emphasized.