- Category: Volume 88 (Fall 2016 - Spring 2017)
- Published: 30 November 2016
- Written by KAAN JON BOZTEPE | CONTRIBUTING WRITER
Aside from gaining a stronger resume by adding on your community service experience, there are many intangible benefits one can receive such as pleasure, fulfillment, and achievement. Community service is good for you; it is known to reduce stress by having your complete concentration on someone other than yourself as well as making you healthier in terms of your delight and optimism. All the positive and healthy emotions you have when having some percentage of control over one’s happiness strengthens your immune system.
Apart from your health, you get a chance to give back and make a difference while bringing people together. Not only do you enhance the community you are in, but you also fuse as one while working with others for a common goal which promotes teamwork and harmony. A benefit that encourages many is that this is where your family and friends live. Regardless if they are your children or your grandparents, you have a chance to enrich their environment and way of life and act as a role model of civic duty.
Alvaro Aquino, a freshman undeclared student shared his thoughts on what he believes to be the benefits of community service, “Community service can help individuals grow as a person as they are able to gain beneficial experiences for the long run. There are many ways in which one can become involved in community service; one most importantly is by finding out about events being held. There are many clubs based on promoting community service, that send students emails to lets us know of different events that are being held.”
Carlene Santos, a freshman business student with a concentration in real estate agent believes, “Community service is important for many reasons. Whether you take part in an organization right in your town or you a major organization you have an interest in. Participating in service not only makes a difference to the organization but it also makes a difference to you yourself. Volunteering gives you satisfaction and helps you feel good about yourself since you’re helping others. It brings joy to others and you personally”.
Adjunct English professor, Jennifer Filannino, shared her thoughts, “Before I answer the question, the word community must be defined clearly. To me, community is the elderly man person standing next to me at the grocery store who needs help bagging and packing his car, the friend I haven’t talked to in a few weeks who just didn’t sound right last time we spoke. Or maybe it’s the estranged cousin who just lost his mother or the teacher with opposing political views who makes me feel uncomfortable but just got diagnosed with cancer.”
Professor Filannino expands further on this idea, “These people create the fabric of my life, our lives. Without their faces, chaos, and drama, our lives would lack the richness of a story. Community service doesn’t need to be a grandiose gesture, donating money or protesting for a cause. It can be both outright and subdued. Serve silently through daily acts of kindness because doing so will motivate more change by creating a ripple effect. Positivity begets positivity and then more. And then maybe that kid who was sullen and anxious for months will forgo his suicide plan. Then you just saved a life.”
As stated before, community service is more than just for the good of the people or community, it is also for yourself. Each person may have a different viewpoint on what community service exactly entails, but no one can deny that the focal point is helping those in need while spreading a positive energy throughout the experience.
The services one can provide for others can unite us as one and creates such a radiant satisfaction for yourself and the community around you. The changes you make to a community create a legacy for people of all ages to be inspired to follow because they can be the change they wish to see in the world. Community service, whether it be a huge event or a local affair, can not only impact that community, but the communities around them. Each good deed speaks dividends and the more you put in the more you’ll get out of life.
PHOTO COURTESY of Courtney Buell