By Catherine Valle, Animo Pat Brown Charter High School, Los Angeles, CA
Do I like community service? Yeah I do, which is why I not only do it as a school requirement but also because its nice way for me to spend my time.
Giving back at the community is not something hard, so there really is no excuse on why students would not want to serve their hours. Plus 40 hours is not a lot, so why not get it out of the way right now instead of waiting until senior year.
I do not really see why students do not get involved with the community sooner, when it is not all that hard. There are a lot of volunteer opportunities, we just have to look and ask.
Many students excuses are “I don’t have time” or “I’m too lazy” which in my case is not a valid excuse. I am a busy person too, but when I have a little bit of free time I find something to do.
I have volunteered at many places like my old elementary, middle, and current high school helping teachers out interpreting, running errands, and doing some other basic stuff.
I like helping especially at a place I once attended, giving back at something that I love.
Volunteering for me is a good way to spend my time, because whenever I’m not busy I immediately find somewhere to go help out at.
I rather be doing something productive than staying at home, wasting my time watching TV.
There are volunteer opportunities of probably anything, if one has a special interest in something there is probably something out there.
Obviously you want it to be something you like, for example I volunteer at the Natural History museum because I have an interest in majoring in anthropology or archeology.
Before actually volunteering, just like a job I had to attend training sessions which actually gave me the chance to realize how interesting paleontology is.
I know many students may not be sure what their interests are yet but trying new things gives one a learning experience and you never know you might end up liking it.
My experiences with the community have been fun for the most part, although some things are to be taken more serious depending what it’s about.
I get to have fun at the museum, since what I usually do is interact with kids but on other occasions like when I have gone to visit hospitals its has been a totally different experience because it can be very depressing.
Yet I like it because it is still a great feeling knowing you are doing something good for the people around you.
Community service should not feel like an obligation, but if you simply are not a people person like me it is okay just find something to do to complete those hours on time.
Do not let it be the reason you do not graduate or not get accepted into good colleges. Since all colleges do look at ones community service, they expect one to do more than what high schools asks for.
Laziness is not excuse, because yeah I get lazy too, everyone does but that is why I find something I like, so I would want to go out and do it.
I guess I did not wait to be told at the last minute to do my hours. I looked for outside activities to have more of a job experience because I could not get a job due to my age but now that I am 16 it is still hard to get a job but while I am in the process I will continue to donate my time to my community.
Although volunteering is not the same as a job because there is less commitment since its not a paid job, but it still gives one an actual experience of responsibility.
My advice is simply not to waste time and wait until the last minute to complete your hours, there is nothing bad about thinking ahead.
There are many things to do this summer don’t just spend it in bed watching TV. Get out in the world and help other because it can benefit it in many ways in the future.
the original article from hsj.org, written by Catherine Valle