Tag Archives: Community

Special Olympics Winter Games 2017 (Service Learning)

Special Olympics Organization and Management: Class PES347

Video from SOMI ’17

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“Special Olympics is all about inclusion and respect,” said Lois Arnold during the opening ceremony of the 2017 Special Olympics Michigan Winter Games. I think that statement alone can summarize the values behind the athletics events, but also more importantly behind the whole organization. Another quote stands out to me that I saw as our class was preparing for the games at the Special Olympics office building, “Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt.” This was my first time having the privilege to serve with Special Olympics and I absolutely loved everything they stand for, I loved spending time with all of the incredible, talented, awesome athletes, and I loved being able to spend time in the beautiful snowy Traverse City for a week. I was assigned figure and speed skating, as well as ice bocce ball (special events outside at night). I loved helping with figure skating, setting up the rink, and cheering loudly (until I lost my voice) for the speed skaters.

Altogether I had the most amazing, fun time at the Winter Games. I learned so much about individuals with disabilities and I made some really great friends with the volunteers, athletes and the families of the athletes. I was able to spend a whole day at figure skating with Ms. Wheelchair Michigan, Jamie Spoore, and hear such interesting stories about her life that I will remember forever. The joy on the athlete’s faces during ceremonies and games refreshed my soul and warmed my heart. I am so thankful for this opportunity and I would absolutely volunteer with SOMI again.

Year In Review Reflection

As an assignment for LDR200, we were asked to revisit your resolution post from 
January, specifically the four questions.

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1. Have you made progress towards these resolutions? Why or why not?
2. How have you grown as a leader since you arrived on campus in August 2014?
3. What have you learned about yourself as a leader?
4. What have you learned about working with others?
Now, I will answer these questions and tell you about my 2015 Spring semester at CMU. Let me tell you, it was one for the books! As I am writing this, it is my last week as a freshmen, my last week in Barnes hall, and my last week living with the best roommates ever. I am really sad, so I apologize if I am extra sappy in this blog post! lol.

1. Have you made progress towards these resolutions? Why or why not?

Although I wouldn’t say I was 100% successful in accomplishing my goals, I would say that I did a pretty job with making progress towards the resolutions. In my post back in January, I said that I wanted to get good grades second semester, stick to a more set schedule, get back to my normal weight, and meet more people. I think that I have done a really job with all of those, except for the weight one. This semester, as I got busier and busier, fitness was put on the back burner. Eating dorm food again, every day, did not help. I am very disappointed I let myself become like this, because I used to be very very active. This summer, I will have lot more time to just work my job, and work out. I am running a half marathon in october, so I will be training for that and having to stick to a workout and diet plan. Besides that resolution, I think that I did a really good job of studying and doing my homework. First semester was my adjustment period, where I learned what places I studied well in, and what places I would loose focus, and how to balance my time to do all my homework. I also had a lot of classes with people I knew, and was able to get help from them. I learned what kind of studying techniques also worked best for me, and I will be finishing the semester off with a lot better g.p.a. than first semester. So whoooo! for that!! I also think I did a really good job of writing in my calendar, which helped me balance my time and stick to a set schedule. With meeting people, I continued to form new connections with people through different activities and clubs. I met some really good friends when I was volunteering on Spring Break, with the alternative breaks program.

2. How have you grown as a leader since you arrived on campus in August 2014?

I think that I have learned a lot about how to facilitate and teach others. I was never trained in leadership like that back in high school. I would also say that I learned how to deal with difficult people, and not that I haven’t dealt with that before, but I have had some interesting situations this year with people in my program, and learned how to adjust to that. Sometimes people in life are just very selfish, judgmental, people, and they aren’t phased by treating people badly. They don’t feel guilty when they make fun of others, and they hate certain people for no specific reason. I learned how to deal with people like that this year.

3. What have you learned about yourself as a leader?

I learned from the Alpha Leadership Experience that I am a Considerate Leader. I want everyone to be happy and I often times think about everyone in a group setting. I am not the strongest at dictating people or having to be harsh with them. Considerate leaders tend to be very big on compassion and serving others. I also learned that I am good at adjusting to new things, but sometimes it just takes me a little while to figure it out. For example, I blindly excepted the nomination of fundraising chair for my sorority, and this semester has been a nightmare when it comes to that! I had no idea how to run a fundraiser at all, and was just given the simple directions of “Run the candle fundraiser, okay?” and I went into it not knowing how any of the operations worked. Well, I can tell you, I learned a lot having to deal with 97 girls and some of their families. It was a lot of stress having to cater to so many people, and with so many different opinions. Also, I am NOT a math person, and counting so many checks and cash, forms and candles really cave me a migraine. Now that it’s over though, I can say I grew as a person, learned a lot about organization, communication, and time management, learned that it’s okay to ask for help sometimes, and how to run a large fundraiser. And I made about $3,000 in profit for my chapter operations, can I get a booyaah!? Probably won’t be fundraising chair again, but nonetheless, I learned a lot about leadership.

4. What have you learned about working with others?

Like I said up above, I have learned a lot about dealing with difficult people. I also learned that compromise is very important when living with roommates and being so close to people every second of the day. Sometimes little things can irritate people, and you have to respect them enough to give them space, or just figure out a solution. Also, sometimes for things like group projects, when there are really strong, vocal personalities in the bunch, it’s best to just sit back and play peace maker, instead of trying to debate them. Things will go by a lot faster if you try and get everyone to voice their opinion, so that the one person who is very strong willed does’t control everything and get too bossy. Promote teamwork and respect!

And well, that is all folks! This year has been crazy fast! I learned an awful lot! I became a good student and very dedicated to my academics (yay!)! I had a lot of fun! I made amazing friendships that I’m incredibly sad to leave behind (my dorm family third floor tribe)! 2015 was great! Excited for summer and fall to roll around! Peace and blessings

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Pre-Service Trip Blog Post

#LASintheD #LASintheD #LASintheD

I AM SO EXCITED! 

My Leader Advancement Cohort is taking a trip to Detroit this weekend, and I am so stoked! For a pre-service assignment, we are asked to respond to the questions below. But AHHH SO EXCITED I CANNOT WAIT!!!!! Here are my responses, and just letting you know one more time, I am so so so pumped!!!

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The Alpha Leadership Experience

Alpha…LEAD!

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Alpha Leadership was a blast! Not only was it a blast, I got to develop my leadership skills through really cool activities. We did self assessments to figure out what our leadership styles were and learned how to effectively communicate and use those styles to our advantages. We had to step outside of our comfort zones (yaayy!). We got to meet really awesome new people! All together, I loved my six weeks of ALPHA! I learned that I am a considerate and spirited leader, and I need to work on further developing my direct and systematic skills.

“I believe a women that serves is a women that leads”

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Reflection Post:

Active Membership in Phi Sigma Sigma.

“OMG Mom! I joined a sorority!”… I never wanted to be one of those girls. I wasn’t really interested in Greek Life at all in the beginning of college. I had heard things, but I did not want to be classified as one of those princess, girly girl, “let’s go shopping, I love Lily Pulitzer!” kind of girls, that’s for sure. But, sure enough, I found myself going through the intense thing they call recruitment in 2014…

Flash forward to 2015..

And I am on Executive council of my sorority, or “aboard” as the members call it. I think that it’s crazy! Something I was so against, I ended up joining and absolutely loving. I think that the best part of my organization is that it’s
philanthropy goes hand in hand with my passions. Our philanthropy is School and College Readiness, which partners with 1.) Practice Makes Perfect and 2.)The Kids In Need Foundation

Practice Makes Perfect = Matches academically struggling elementary and middle school scholars with older, high achieving near-peer mentors from the same high-need communities.

Kids In Need Foundation =  Mission to ensure that every child is prepared to learn and succeed by providing free school supplies nationally to students most in need.

 

Throughout my time thus far in Phi Sigma Sigma, I have served as many roles on 
Executive Council as well as Executive Board. Currently I hold the position as 
Scribe on eboard. The past semesters, I have held the positions of Diversity 
chair, Fundraising chair, Community Service chair, Leadership Development Chair, 
and Fall 2014 New Member Class Philanthropy chair on Executive Council. I have 
gained a lot of professional development through these positions, as well as 
personal growth.

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