When and why did you begin volunteering?
I first started volunteering with my father’s political campaigns when I was ten. I would go with him to hours of letter-stuffing and talking with the volunteers helping to run his campaign, and when I was older he introduced me to his campaign managers and occasionally let me help canvas for his and other elections. He would explain the things he’d observed trying to work with other people towards one goal, and then ask what I would do. I realized that people often struggled to reach their goals because they couldn’t agree on the right path to take to get there. When I began volunteering at my studio, I noticed the same thing, and through mediating began to see that many disagreements were caused by the way that different struggles in life shaped each person’s idea of how to achieve success. It became clear that some people seemed to have to struggle a great deal more than others, often because of factors out of their control, and it didn’t seem right to just accept that. Through analyzing the ways others approached their goals, my own goals became clearer, and I began searching for more service options.
Bonner Leader Interns face many challenges over the course of their service. Think about a challenge you have experienced. Briefly identify the challenge and explain in detail how you approached this challenge (how you planned, what resources you used, what actions were taken) and any lessons or knowledge gained from the experience.
During my first semester junior year, I took AP Calculus and AP Physics, both of which gave me a much heavier workload than I expected. I found myself coming home after my dance classes exhausted and unprepared for the assignments I still had left. To manage, I began to lay my work out in front of me and determine what I needed to do immediately, what I could fit in later on, and what I would need help to complete, and continuing accordingly. I also started scheduling my week thoroughly, using any break I had during the day to reduce the burden I would have later that night. I became very good at time management, and was even able to help my friends in similarly overwhelming situations break down their schedules and fit in what needed to be done. I passed each class with an A, and continue now to use the same tactics I taught myself last year, finding any opportunity to finish a job sooner rather than later and prioritizing my tasks based on both ability and importance so that everything is finished by the time that it is needed.
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