Service has always been a huge part of my life. Even when I was younger I experienced public service through my parents who always put a large emphasis on helping others and giving back to the community.
In fact, I would even go as far as to say that this exposure to service and seeing how beneficial it is for everyone has guided me to where I am today, serving with AmeriCorps.
Throughout most of my college career, being part of a national service program was something that I never thought I could do. I had visions of these people who knew exactly the difference they wanted to make and how they were going to do it. But in reality, it was quite the opposite. The realm of national service isn’t exclusively tailored to a specific individual with superhero-esque qualities that is destined to change the world. This realization made me see that anyone, even I, could make a positive impact on the world by giving what are needed most; time, compassion, and a sense of understanding.
Joining AmeriCorps and The American Red Cross has truly been a life changing experience that I will never forget. Not to say there haven’t been challenges, because there have been, but the long hours and struggle to live off a stipend is nothing in comparison to the sense of satisfaction and reward that comes from helping others and bringing the community together.
To me, public service is something that everyone should participate in during their life, whether it is on a national level or just within a community. Serving on a national scale is a growing opportunity. It means to become selfless, empathetic, and supportive, even when it’s not easy. It means to be a role model for those in the community, but most importantly, it means to be the change that you want to see in the world.