Ozanam Scholar

Essay by starpnkA-, March 2007

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The poverty that exists in specific countries has been a well aware problem that I wish to address. Although there is no immediate resolution to alleviate the problem, many people are still seeking for the answer. I believe that seeking for an answer motivates me to help others because I find that helping others is the greatest feeling a person can receive.

Working as an Ozanam Scholar at St. John’s allows me to handle the problem head on and practice and associate with different types of people. I believe that a multi-disciplinary team search with faculty mentors will benefit much for me. The reason for this is that participating in a group activity is the best way for individuals to learn from each other. Each person has a different perspective of ways of approaching a problem and from that interaction, others can learn too. Having a mentor makes the experience more worthwhile because to learn from someone higher and more knowledgeable than yourself is a rewarding experience.

I would bring to the research group a lot of motivation and self esteem. Most people I encounter during group work tend to be timid and reticent, but I will motivate and inspire people. In high school, I was the club leader of one of the biggest clubs in the school (200 people) and one of the obstacles I had to experience was to work with a large number of people. Sometimes people don’t cooperate and it takes patience and determination to make notice of you.

Over the summer, I volunteered at one of the biggest hospitals in the nation. Just from spending one afternoon with a fellow resident, I learned one of my biggest lessons by far. I learned how to be adaptive with all types of people. The lady, Mrs. Jones, is the one I got to spend the lovely afternoon with. After two weeks notice, she decided to leave us from this world. I was in solemn despair for more than two weeks, and refused to go back to volunteer at the hospital.

Before Mrs. Jones, I didn’t care about helping anyone else. I wasn’t excited about helping others; I barely cleaned my own room; I was of no service to anyone. But today, I can strongly say that helping others is my greatest goal. It is a wonderful feeling knowing you can affect other people. My mother once advised me, “Vicky, why are you not appreciative about your surroundings such as the house you live in, or even the bed you sleep upon? Many people are sick each and every day and you sit here wasting food and money.” I never took these words to be meaningful nor did I put them anywhere near my heart. Now I finally know what my mother meant. I need to make a change. I need to make one as an Ozanam Scholar.