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Mechanical Engineering-Biomedical Option
Colorado Springs CO

The Gift of Giving

Megan Chapman on Thursday, 11 November 2010. Posted in Clubs, Student Life

It’s that time of year again where people give thanks for all of the wonderful things in their lives.  I decided this year to share my holiday spirit and give a little back to my community.  Yesterday, the Society of Women Engineers of Rochester invited me to help them serve Thanksgiving dinner at a facility called the Sojourner House and help with some engineering and science activities.  I wasn’t sure exactly of the details but agreed.  This was definitely something that I am glad that I said yes to.

The Sojourner House is a facility in downtown Rochester that provides services, living, and assistance mostly to young single mothers.  The facility was BEAUTIFUL and it was so much fun getting back into the community and helping others. 
The joy of seeing these families together after having so many struggles in life was overwhelming.  Many of them are thankful just to have their families and to be together during the holidays.  It was a very humbling experience, but also a very inspiring one.  Many of the women are working towards high school diplomas, GED’s, and even college degrees.  They had an attitude and drive for life that was totally inspiring for me and I hope that sharing my experience at RIT was just as inspiring to them. They were so interested in the science kits that we brought along and I am excited for the opportunity to go back and possibly tutor during the week.

Sojourner Truth where the name for the Sojouner house came from
(click for more info)

My first year at RIT I didn’t have a car, as per previous blog posts, and felt a little disconnected from my community.  I was extremely active in service during high school as many of you readers probably are too.  I felt a like something was missing last year and I drove to change that this year.  I have become part of the Student Advisory Board for the Leadership Institute and Community Service Center at RIT.  This again, was something that I did not know what to expect, but it has turned out to be extremely rewarding.  I help plan various leadership events for students on campus as well as group community service events.  I finally feel like a part of a community like I did at home in Colorado and am continually looking into ways to get involved in the Rochester community.  If you are curious about community service events through campus stop into the Leadership Institute and Community Service Center in the Campus Center or check out their website .  This is a great place to start if you are even a current student at RIT without transportation.  The Center often organizes community service trips and provides rides.  The opportunities are definitely out there if you are willing to look.  A lesson I learned my first year at RIT.

Share the gift of giving this holiday season.

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