Understanding Community Through Service and Coalition Building
Student quotes from papers of reflection:
"For the first time in my four years here at Oregon State, I can honestly say that it is my first experience towards having more of an open mind and being more socially aware of people in my surrounding and environments."
"The service project really helped me to understand community and its importance."
"The very first thing I learned was to respect everyone no matter how different they are from yourself…….The class made me realize that for me to be happy in life, I know I will have to be involved in helping people in some way." "…after taking this class, I realize that if you have money, don't just donate it, but donate it and be the one spending the time to help the people. It is much more gratifying when you get to see smiles on people's faces."
"I am now more concerned for my first impressions and how I treat people without actually knowing them. This class made me want to work harder to get to know people and not judge them."
"I felt that within this one, long, vigorous day, I had growth within my mind."
"After that day I find myself wanting to go out and participate and volunteer in my surrounding community…twice since then I have been to the food bank and soup kitchen in Salem. I really learned a lot from those few hours spent helping others."
"The Habitat for Humanity project was my favorite part of the day, but the small group discussion opened my eyes a lot more from learning through others."
"I met a lot of great people and came away with more than I could have imagined. One of the best things that I got out of the day was friendship."
"In the end, the class was much more than anything I could have wished for, it was even worth waking up early on a Saturday morning for. The facilitators made the atmosphere comfortable and open. They enticed the conversation when it was needed, and never let the attitude of the group die down. I never once felt judgment from any of the other students and was more than comfortable voicing my opinion and listening to others. I learned from everyone and everything that I interacted with throughout the day. I walked away with pride and a feeling that I contributed to a purpose that other people will hopefully benefit from."
"The service project was definitely a different experience which helped me form new opinions and reestablish old ones."
"Not only did I learn a lot that day, but it also got me to thinking about my future and what I can do to help society out."
"The last thing that I want to mention is what I plan to do in my future now. One thing I realized after this day, was that it just takes one person to make a difference. …since our class ended, I actually joined a national (service) group called Soroptomists."
"A commitment I will make is to volunteer at least once a month. I think this would be a good method for me to give back to the community."
"How do we begin to chip away at oppression? Demonstrating compassion, empathy, open-mindedness and experiencing the joy in helping out a stranger simply because you can. Take action. When all of these ingredients come into the mix, you develop not only a higher degree of satisfaction with yourself, but you begin the process of taking down oppression within yourself and your community."
"It was amazing -- all of the eye opening questions that were asked during this class. Although I may not have been very excited about the class in the beginning of the day, it did not take me long to realize how lucky I was to have stumbled upon this class. Many classes I take for 10 weeks do not even come close to changing my life. However, this class which was only for one day, inspired me and got me thinking about my own values and ideas, and got me questioning why I think the way I do."
"It was the first time anybody had really every made me feel special because I was different."
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