This quote began to have meaning for me when I started volunteering at FLOC in September 2012. I was a recent college graduate, finishing up my very first internship in DC, and yearning for an opportunity to give back in this community.
For just a couple of hours a week, I started helping a Scholars Program Instructor facilitate a workshop for a diverse group of 10th graders. The curriculum sought to empower the 10th graders to build the skills they would need to succeed in college and beyond.
As they started to work on their 10 Year Plans – a project that enables them to reflect on high school, navigate college and postsecondary life, and explore careers – I realized how little time I spent thinking about my own path.
What are my personal strengths? In what environments do I work best? How can I be both happy and successful in the work I choose? What makes me “come alive”?
Before long I realized the answers to these questions all pointed me back to FLOC. I wanted to help FLOC students feel empowered while navigating the ups and downs in their individual journey. I wished that they would develop a life-long love for learning. I aspired to be a caring adult in their lives who would help them identify – and not lose sight of – what makes them “come alive.”
A year later, and with a greater sense of clarity about my purpose, I am so grateful for the opportunity to continue serving our FLOC community as one of three Scholars Program Instructors. I am looking forward to build relationships with our 6th and 10th grade Scholars this 2013-2014 school year!
(Jessie Garrett is a Scholars Program Instructor at FLOC).