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Edison State Community College
Giving back to the community
By Shayna Emrick
Edison Student Volunteer

I have chosen to do the After School Program at Edison. It is very valuable to me. I have always valued knowledge and school, so this program is an excellent way to get me involved with the community more. Also, there are benefits from every side. The volunteer benefits from the satisfaction of giving back to the community and making new friends with the students. The students benefit from the help that is given and the fun they get to have. Parents benefit from the help that their child or children receive. This program is a great way for a student to receive help from new friends and help them progress in their studies. They might not always want to do their work, but through encouragement the homework is finished.

By participating in the After School Program, I have gained so much. One thing I have learned is how to encourage the students to get their homework done. I have also gained a little more patience. I haven’t always been a patient person, so this program surely helped me. There were times when I got frustrated and tired, but there were some kids that always brought a smile to my face. Some of the comments that they make or their questions are just too funny. That’s one more thing I have gained from the After School Program. The ability to have fun with them and their crazy questions. The program had its time of seriousness, but then there were the times when we could have fun with them. I personally made up a game with one of the kids after she got her homework done. It was a math game where we practiced her addition. We would use the cards and for each one we got correct she would add. We turned this into a game where she would always want to play it with me, even in her snack and movie time. This is a precious memory to me and it will be remembered forever.

When I first thought about the program, I couldn’t wrap my head around the idea of Edison’s Core Values applying to it. It wasn’t until this assignment that I actually thought about it and saw the connection. The program has shown me many things. For instance, I have seen the core values and how they have played a part in the program. I have gained a greater love for teaching. This After School Program has been a great experience for me and others.

Communication is the first value that is mentioned in the syllabus. We learned at the beginning of the course that communication is everywhere and nothing is without communication. That applies to the program as well. There is communication with us and the student when helping them with their homework. The next value is ethics. I have seen ethics in two different ways. The responsibility of the student and the volunteer as well as honesty from the students about their homework. It is the volunteer’s responsibility to show up for the times they are signed up for. It is the student’s responsibility to get their homework done and be honest about it. I know that there are incidents with the students when they don’t tell the truth about their homework.

I don’t really have any suggestions for the program. I had some things that I didn’t like, but there is nothing really to do about. I really didn’t like the inconsistency of the volunteers. There was always an inconsistency with who would show up when. I can’t give any solutions to this because I don’t know how to solve it at all. Although one thing I would change is how the rooms and tables were. I think it would be much easier for the volunteers to help multiple students when they are all spread out. It would also be easier for those with groups of students to sit altogether. Usually, when I had a group of kids I would also have to relocate to another room.   

Overall, I thought the program was great. It was fun for both the students and me as well. The memories that I have made with the kids will always be remembered. There were times when I thought I was going to lose my patience altogether, but I stuck with it. I’m glad I did because it was worth it. The kids in the program are all great and I am very glad that I met them all. It was a great experience to have and I will remember it forever.

Shayna has completed 29 hours in Empowering Darke County Youth’s After School Program on the Edison Darke County Campus. To get details about her assignment, go to Edison Students Speak Out

To get more details about Empowering Darke County Youth and the After School Program, go to the Empowering Darke County Youth link.

This opinion is being published with permission, and was chosen for CNO readers due to the quality of the assignment submission and relevance of the topic. It does not necessarily represent the opinion of County News Online or Edison State Community College.

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