By Trista Meadlo, senior corps member/Team Leader serving on the Tulsa Area United Way Team at Clinton Middle School

1. A Support System

City Year is a challenging year; mentally, physically, and emotionally. A strong support system is a must for any City Year corps member, whether this consists of other City Year members or not. The service year becomes that much more meaningful when you can share your joys and struggles with those who believe in and support you.

2. An Open Mind

It is part of our daily readiness check and also a PITW, so it must be important! Having an open mind is key to the City Year experience. A beautiful thing about City Year is the wide diversity of the corps, which provides endless opportunities to learn and experience new things. Having an open mind helps develop your perspective, learn new things, and become a better leader.

3. A Daily Planner

The days are long and very busy so having a planner is a must! Even having something as simple as a sheet of paper to function as a to-do list can be a game changer. Scheduling your classes, tutoring sessions, lunch groups, phone calls and general tasks is a great way to stay organized and avoid being overwhelmed, especially when the weeks get busy. Whatever works for you to stay organized, do it! 

4. A Solid Sleep Schedule

PITW # 140 begins by saying, “Often the first thing we lose at City Year is sleep.” It’s important to remain rested and ready to serve each day. Taking care of yourself helps you serve our students better.

5. Lots of Energy!

City Year is known for bringing energy- whether it’s morning greeting, outside events or just our presence in the halls. The kids sometimes think we’re too crazy and loud in the mornings and “boosted” throughout the day, but deep down, they love it. As a City Year corps member, it is important that you find what it is that gives you an energy boost when you need it most. Coffee is my source of energy and I’m pretty certain I’ve become an addict this year- whoops!

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