10 Things You Learn As A Drew University Civic Scholar

10 Things You Learn As A Drew University Civic Scholar

“Freely ye have received, freely give”
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The Drew University Civic Scholar Program is a scholarship program based on community service, providing students with volunteer opportnities, non-profit internships, and the chance to make a difference both outside of and within the Drew Community. As a third-year Civic Scholar, here are 10 things I have learned while in the program.

1. Positive risk-taking can change your life

Whether you come into college knowing exactly what you want to do or not, the Civic Scholars program will encourage you to think outside the box and take risks. The classes and community service opportunities teach us to look beyond our own lives and explore how our actions affect other people, a practice that continues after graduation, even if we don’t end up working in the non-profit sector.

2. Teachers push you because they care

Amy Sugerman, Amy Kortiz, and other teachers and facilitators involved in the Civic program strive not only for educational growth, but spiritual growth as well. We are in college to find where our passions lie and they are dedicated to helping us on that journey and showing us how our passions can better the lives of others. The path of each Civic Scholar is different, but they are always there to help us along the way.

3. Community service can be fun!

Swimming with children with disabilities, shadowing doctors at an ER, helping people at old folks homes, sorting goods at a food bank, building houses with Habitat for Humanity in New Orleans, laughing with friends while harvesting vegetables at Grow-a-Row, interning with Sesame Workshop--all of these activities and more are community service opportunities you have as a Civic Scholar!

4. You just might find your best friends

Spending your first year of college in a living-learning community of your fellow Civic Scholars allows you the opportunity to find people who share your values, dreams, and passions. Even after college, making these meaningful connections can help you with networking. But more importantly, you might find the people who will stick with you through the bad times and the good times for four years and beyond.

5. Everyone can make a difference

Making a difference doesn’t need to be a huge event like passing a law or donating millions of dollars. It can be as simple as being the reason someone smiles today.

6. All people are people

Man, woman, child, elder, LGBTQ+, straight, disabled, able-bodied, black, white, Latinx, Asian, Native, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist, Muslim, immigrant, Pilgrim descendant, Democrat, Republican--when you work with a person, you realize these labels don’t matter. They’re just a person who needs help and you can help them. Especially in these divided times, compassion and empathy can be hard traits to come by. Civic Scholars have them in spades.

7. Community service is not just about your community

Through Drew programs, Civic Scholars have the opportunity to go to Washington D.C., New Orleans, Kentucky, the Dominican Republic, South Africa, England, Ireland, and many other places throughout the U.S. and the world.

8. Change is never hopeless

Many people say Civic Scholars are too idealistic or that striving for change is unrealistic, but we know that passion and teamwork are what make positive changes happen. Change doesn’t happen all at once, but the slow and steady work of Civic Scholars can bring hope in a dark time.

9. Non-profit work is real work

Through Civic Scholars, you learn vital skills about running non-profit events and organizations that make you highly sought after in the non-profit field. Also, through internships and other volunteering opportunities, you just might end up with a job after graduation!

10. It’s more than the money

Sure, the money is nice, but the experience you gain from being a Civic Scholar is worth so much more.

Cover Image Credit: Drew University Civic Scholar Program

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18 things all college kids think during their first week home of summer break

Because it's so nice to be home, I think?

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1. Ahhh, it's so nice to be home

Buckingham Palace ain't got nothing on this place

2. OMG my pups!! I missed you doggos so much

Just accept my love. Pls. Love me back, I've been gone for 8 months. I'm begging.

3. Wow this queen bed is so big

*cue sleeping in a starfish position*

4. Finally a bedroom to myself

Headphones? I don't know her.

5. But wait, it's kinda scary sleeping in a dark room alone again

"Hello? Are there any ghosts in here?"

6. Sooooooo, no more meal plan?

Are you sure the local Chick-Fil-A doesn't accept meal swipes?

7. Who am I supposed to annoy at 2am if my friends don't live down the hall anymore?

2:30 AM: "Mom? Dad? Wanna go get french fries with me? Maybe watch a movie?"

*Snoring*

"Okay maybe tomorrow...Sorry for bothering you. Okay good talk!"

8. "Mom you're going to do my laundry now, right?"

I mean it's kinda your job isn't it?

No? Okay yes ma'am I will do my own laundry no problemo, aye aye captain!

9. Me and my friends are going to spend every day together

*Me talking to myself through the camera on Snapchat*:

"So we're approaching day four with zero human interaction. Pretty good work, but we could do better!"

10. Yes, final grades are in! Can't wait to see what I got this semester!

*Slowly closes computer screen*

11. Do I really have to ask my parents to leave the house?

*Doesn't Ask*:

Mom: "HOW DARE YOU LEAVE THIS HOUSE WITHOUT OUR PERMISSION! YOU LIVE UNDER OUR ROOF AND WILL ABIDE BY OUR RULES."

*Asks*:

Mom: "Oh honey you're an adult now, you don't have to ask! Come and go as you please!"

12. Chores? Yea no thank you.

They've been doing them without me for months. They're all set.

13. Wait, so forreal though.. do restaurants in town take my meal plan?

Bank Account: $5.93

*Whispers to worker* "I won't tell if you don't. Just swipe my school ID, see if it works."

14. Will my Juul set off the fire alarm in my bedroom?

Probably.

*Rips Juul*

15. I kinda underestimated how weird it would be to hang out with people from my high school again.

"Oh no you haven't changed a bit Janice! Your baby is so cute lol."

*Awkwardly laughs*

16. Why do my old friends have new friends?

I don't like this, not one bit.

17. Can they tell that I'm not really listening to their stories about school?

"Yeah haha Delta Sigma Mu sounds sooooo dope Chad, that's ~wild~ that you had late nights three times a week lol!"

"Oh you snuck into the football stadium when the gates were unlocked?? That's crazy, you're crazy, school sounds... crazy!"

18. I'm bored. How long until I can go back to school?

Is it too late for a summer intersession?

Cover Image Credit:

upload.wikimedia.org

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To The Roommates Who Became My Sisters

I can't imagine my freshman year without you two
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I can't even begin to fathom that my freshman year of college is over. Everything got done on time and I pulled it off without turning into a complete and utter mess. This year was full of new people, experiences, hardships, triumphs, and laughs. To be perfectly honest, I couldn't have done it without my roommates.

I don't have any siblings, so I've never had to share a living space. Going from my own room to a triple seemed like a disaster waiting to happen. But somehow, you were both patient with me and you turned something I was dreading into something I loved going home to.

Our room has turned into my favorite place on campus. I know it isn't perfect. I'm still messy, and we're three people living in a room built for two, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I love how our styles blended perfectly and you can see all of our personalities shine through all of our posters and paintings (My favorite thing ever is when people come in and tell us how much they love our room).

You two have become my rock(s). You've been there for me through the craziness of the year, the highs and the lows. You've seen me at my best and my worst, and you still love me. Not to be dramatic, but when you both moved out I felt like a piece of me went with you. Being in three different states is so weird. Going to bed without you two to chat with is so strange. Waking up to an empty room is what I've done for 18 years, but somehow, it feels different now.

I'm not trying to be dramatic, but you two are the closest I have to siblings. Things weren't perfect all of the time. We had our disagreements and differences. But no matter what, I always knew we had each other's backs. I loved our spontaneous jam sessions and late night talks. Even though we won't live together next year, I fully expect to see you both often and I'll always make time to hear about your day.

What I'm really trying to say is thank you. Thank you for becoming such an integral part of my freshman year, and of my life. Thank you for helping me make big decisions (because you know I hate making decisions) and for being there for me when things didn't go according to plan. Thank you for turning our room into my comfort zone and my home away from home.

I don't know what I'm going to do when I don't get to see you two every day. Having to walk across campus to hang out is going to be an adjustment, but know that I'll always be down for movie nights, jam sessions, trips to Target, or just hanging out pretending to do work.

I don't know what the next three years have in store, but I know I can do anything with you by my side.

(109 We So Fine forever)

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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