2015-06-29

By Max Mays, AmeriCorps Member, Heinemann and Dartmouth-Hitchcock Supported Team,
Serving at Henry Wilson Elementary School

On the last week of April, as New Hampshire’s public schools closed for a spring break, City Year members assembled in the office to prepare for this year’s final stretch. In addition to assistance with in-class instruction and a site-wide Community Meeting, Corps Members were treated to an hour-long training on Life After City Year (also known as LACY). These sessions provide Corps Members with resources and instruction meant to aid in the professional transition that inevitably follows each service year. Because Corps Members have a wide range of academic and professional experience, LACY sessions are designed to prepare everyone, whether entering college for the first time or joining the work force. 

The most recent LACY session was unique because it featured peer-instruction from Corps Members. CYNH members had the option to choose between a session on networking, cover letters, public speaking, financial aid, and time management. Each of these sessions, which lasted about 35 minutes, were led and facilitated by a City Year Corps Member. In networking, Seamus McGuire spoke about the importance of keeping an updated LinkedIn profile. Anna Caron led a session on financial aid, which informed potential college students on fiscal frugality. For time management, Katrina Herrera spoke about the importance of prioritizing. Aaron Griffith’s session on public speaking showed Corps Members how to annunciate and exude confidence. 

I was fortunate enough to present on cover letters, which gave me both an opportunity to break out my comfort zone and work closely with my colleagues on an important aspect of the application process. Throughout the session, attendees were taught the basic structure and rhetoric that should be used in a cover letter. At the end, the group’s knowledge was put to the test as they critiqued a letter that I wrote myself. As a presenter, I greatly enjoyed the experience. Interacting with my peers is always enjoyable, and I hope that they walked away with a greater understanding of the application process. 

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