5 Places to Help Yourself and Help the World

5 Places to Help Yourself and Help the World

AKA the most rewarding way to procrastinate.
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So for most high school and university students, this is the panicky period of time that’s slightly too early for finals yet close enough for those simultaneous feelings of anxiety and procrastination to set in, and we all sit in an educational purgatory waiting for the exam-armageddon to release upon us. Neither studying nor relaxing, many of us have a short break from huge projects, but know that cumulative final or twenty-page paper is just a dash around the corner. So while you’re obviously not studying (which, no shame, we all understand) you could at least spend your time benefitting someone else, if not yourself. So here is a list of places to go where you can not only help others, but also help yourself a bit by not totally time you could be using to study.

*note: this list is specified towards the University of Georgia/Athens area, but with a Google search you can find many similar programs around you.

1. Athens Humane Society

I personally do this one quite often. By going on their website (HERE) you can sign up to volunteer at the Athens Humane Society for a one-hour or multi-hour slot to help with the shelter animals. There’s all sorts of jobs you can do, but especially in the stress of academia, I recommend the socialization volunteering. You basically get to sit in a room with dogs or cats (whichever your preference) and play with them for an hour to get them used to having many different people around so that, when they are finally adopted, they don’t go crazy on their new owners. It’s a lot of fun and the animals are complete angels. Plus, who wouldn’t want to spend an hour cuddling a kitten? I’d rather hold a dog than my Economics textbook.

2. The Morton Theater

The arts are unfortunately receiving little to no funding by public boards, so oftentimes, especially for community theaters, their staff relies entirely on the generosity of donations and volunteering. HERE you can volunteer for many different positions to assist in one of the many choral, theatrical, etc. performances offered at The Morton Theater in Athens. Ushers in particular are needed in every theater, so the Morton is just one example. And very often if you do volunteer, you get free tickets to the show! So if you’re an artsy person like myself (thanks four years of high school theater) this is totally in your element. It’s an easy opportunity with fun benefits, and one of the few jobs that’ll leave you clapping by the end of the night.

3. Rocksprings Community Center

I highlight this particular center because it has a program though UGA, Whatever It Takes, in which students volunteer to give homework help, tutoring, mentoring, and other assistance for special after school programs to the children of Athens-Clarke County. However, at almost every community center there are tutoring, mentoring, and recreational volunteering opportunities. Heads up Early Childhood Ed. majors, here’s a great place to get involved with elementary-aged kids and make a difference in the community around your university. Plus, kids are just fun. Working at a daycare, while stressful, was one of the most fun and rewarding jobs of my life. Thankfully the kids at WIT are a bit older (no diaper-changing required) and there’s no feeling comparable to seeing a smile on a child’s face and knowing you’re the reason behind it.

4) Southeast Clarke Park

Again, another one that applies to almost every park, but I can only talk about one. Southeast Clarke Park was built by volunteers, so they are integral to their structure and upkeep. As a volunteer, you have the choice of either working as a Trail Keeper, which includes safety monitoring, cleaning, and general upkeep, or as a Soccer Coach, in which you’ll commit about two to three hours a week working with a team of kids ages 4-12 to learn the sport, learn to love the sport, and participate in games each week. No prior training is necessary, just come with an understanding of soccer and an enthusiasm for learning! Coaches are some of the most influential forces in a young child’s life, so taking this opportunity will surely be an incredible experience. You can look further into their open positions HERE.

5) Bear Hollow Zoo

This one is by far the most involved, but arguably the coolest of the five. At Bear Hollow Zoo, located in Memorial Park by Five Points, there’s literally bears. How cool is that? All the bears are “rehab” animals, meaning they cannot live in the wild, so they’re pretty much fully socialized. There are many different tasks to perform: animal care, animal training, performing as a docent, meaning you’re the person with all the fun animal/nature facts, or even a tour guide! There are other animals besides the bears, so if you were never a big fan of the Berenstain’s, no problem. The jobs come with basic training, so don’t worry about coming in an animal expert. This is a super fun, unique experience not many can have while in undergrad! So definitely check it out; even if you just want to work for a bit for a special event, this is a place to look into!

Volunteering is a great way to build a resume, benefit the free world, and have some fun, too! You can’t necessarily study all day, we get that, so why not use that procrastinating time, instead of posting on your blog, helping out your community? You’ll leave feeling better about yourself and refreshed from academia, if only for an hour or two. So get ready to stick your nose in those books, but don’t forget about all the good you can do around you to make an impact. Your time is more effective and more influential that you’d think.

Cover Image Credit: http://www.circlesolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Diversity-Hands-Many-Post-1080x675.jpg

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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14 Honest College Things The Class Of 2023 Needs To Know ~Before~ Fall Semester

Sit down, be humble.

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To The Class of 2023,

Before you start your college career, please know:

1. Nobody...and I mean nobody gives a shit about your AP Calculus scores.

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" I got a 5 in Calc AB AND BC, a 5 in AP Literature, awh but I only got a 4 in AP Chem"

2. THE SAME GOES FOR YOUR SAT/ACT SCORES + nobody will know what you're talking about because they changed the test like 10 times since.

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3. College 8 AMs are not the same as your 0 period orchestra class in 12th grade.

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4. You're going to get rejected from a lot of clubs and that does not make you a failure.

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5. If you do get into your clubs, make sure not to overwhelm or overcommit yourself.

visual representation of what it looks like when you join too many clubs

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6. It's OK to realize that you don't want to be pre-med or you want to change majors.

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7. There will ALWAYS ALWAYS be someone who's doing better than you at something but that doesn't mean you're behind.

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8. "I'm a freshman but sophomore standin-" No, you don't have to clarify that, you'll sound like an asshole.

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9. You may get your first ever B-, C+ or even D OR EVEN A W in your life. College is meant to teach you how to cope with failure.

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10. Go beyond your comfort zone. Join a theatre club if you're afraid of public speaking. Join an animal rescue club if you're afraid of animals. College is learning more about yourself.

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11. Scholarships do exist. APPLY APPLY APPLY.

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12. Don't try to brag about all the stuff you did in high school, you'll just sound like a weenie hut jr. scout

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13. Understand and be sensitive to the fact that everybody around you has a different experience and story of getting to university.

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14. You're going to be exposed to people with different opinions and views, don't fight them. Instead, try to explain your perspective and listen to their reasoning as well.

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