AmeriCorps Update 12/25/12

We spelled AmeriCorps thanks to our generous donors!  Can we spell it again?
We spelled AmeriCorps thanks to our generous donors! Can we spell it again?

When I started my freshman year at the University of Nevada Reno as an honors student, I was lucky enough to come across Alex Ellison, the AmeriCorps VISTA that had just been placed in the Honors Program. During her term of service, she had created a service club that I participated in, and told me about the opportunity to be a VISTA with Nevada Volunteers that coming summer. I jumped at the chance because I knew this was an amazing opportunity for me to gain new skills, to explore the nonprofit sector, and most importantly, to make a difference.

During my term, I was placed with Nevada Volunteers, where I worked on a number of different projects, but the main project that I worked on was creating a resource for the University of Nevada, Reno that housed volunteer opportunities that were specifically for college students, and were organized by major, interest, and skill set. I also worked on developing the alternative break program at the University.

Lyndsey serving with her Alternative Break Club.
Lyndsey serving with her Alternative Break Club.

My favorite part of service was the people that I met. There are so many great people that work in with the nonprofit sector, and it was an absolute pleasure to meet and serve with them. I know that I can say I left my term of service with more friendships and connections than when I had started.

My AmeriCorps*VISTA experience put me on a different path in life. As student in the summer before my sophomore year of college, it is rare to find an opportunity like the one I received at Nevada Volunteers. This was the first time I worked in an office environment, set up and participated with meetings with nonprofit professionals, created resources, and much more on a daily basis. If I had to say what I gained from this experience overall, I think I would say that it gave me an idea of what I wanted to do in the future, and more importantly, confidence in myself that I could do it.

I think my AmeriCorps service opened my eyes for just how many different causes there are in the world. I think, because of this, it’s important for one to find something that one is passionate about to focus on, and I’ve found that passion for the nonprofit field. I enjoyed and still enjoy participating in many different service activities because I love the feeling I get when I know that I’ve made a difference, even just a small one. Because of National Service, I will forever be involved in service in some way for the rest of my life.

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