2015-01-06

Yessica Garcia, AmeriCorps Member, Harvard Pilgrim and Riverstone Co-Sponsored Team,
Serving at Beech Street Elelmentary School 

As Thanksgiving comes to a close and the hype about Black Friday and Cyber Monday is slowly fading away, December welcomes us with the notion of giving. Giving is the ability to transfer the possession of something to someone. Giving Tuesday for example brings charities, families, businesses, community centers and students around the world together for one common purpose: to celebrate generosity. It is a global day dedicated to giving back. 

City Year corps members serve where the need is greatest. My program manager, Henny said, "Somebody has to do it and who better for the job than me!" It is the possibility of making a difference, not the guarantee that keeps him going every year. Currently City Year New Hampshire consists of 54 highly skilled idealistic individuals who decided to give a year and change the world. Many of these individuals including myself come from a variety of education backgrounds: high school graduates, some college, and college graduates. Every day our work is guided by our idealism, hope, and courage to help young people. 

Given that we are in the season of giving my fellow Beech Street teammates gave me sublime insight into the reason they decided to dedicate a year of their life to service. Overall the underlining reason is somewhat similar; we serve to ensure students succeed.

“I am giving a year of service because not only do I know what it feels like to fall through the cracks in school, but I also know how it feels to find someone who refused to give up on me. I serve because I believe that all children have the potential to exceed their dreams.” -Ms. Boulduc

“I choose to do a year of service to give back to the community that I was raised in. As a first generation immigrant I understand the struggles and tribulations of the children for whom I am serving. I attribute much of my academic success to key young people that have acted as role models and teachers to me. During my year of service I hope to impact a child in the same capacity and hopefully ripple that impact to future generations.” -Mr. Tran

“I decided to give a year of service because I came to a point in my life where I wanted to learn, inspire, and I was in desperate need of guidance. Above all, I knew that with dedicating a full year of service, I would be given an opportunity to help young individuals learn, grow, and achieve. I was confident that I would learn just as much, if not more from the live's I am able to connect with and ultimately help students better understand that they have the golden opportunity [...] to write their own destinies.” -Mr. B

“My first thought when contemplating participating in City Year was that it would be a perfect opportunity to gain experience while taking a break between undergraduate and graduate education. I was drawn to the convenience of [...] impacting the lives of young children within [a year]. Now, my long-term goals remain stagnant, whereas my short-term goals and aspirations are constantly changing. I have been given a unique perspective into what goes on in a classroom and how a child's day can be made brighter by the doings of one person. I view my year of service as an opportunity to not only immerse myself in a new community and gain education-related experience, but also to learn and grow as an individual and as a leader from both my colleagues and my students.”  -Ms. Hill

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