Youth Forward scholarship 2016 – The Human Investment – Making a difference however, whenever, and wherever you can

Name: Caleb Beasley
From: Claudville, Virginia
Grade: 12th Grade, Senior
School: Patrick County
Votes: 15

The Human Investment

Caleb Beasley

I have always been drawn to the situation where someone’s day needs a
little uplifting or someone needs to be encouraged because some jerk
has decided to belittle them. I like to make people laugh. I like to
make people feel good. I like for people to feel like they have just
as much right for the sun to shine on them as everyone else does.
When approaching my Senior year and getting my own Senior Portraits
done, it occurred to me because of the expense involved, this rite of
passage may be a luxury not afforded to many in my area. Senior
Portraits represent our transitioning into adulthood, all the hard
work we have done to get to this point. I wanted to make this
experience happen for a few of my classmates.

I approached my Aunt, a wonderful, local photographer to see if she
would be interested in volunteering some time to the project. She was
more than happy to oblige and also asked a fellow photographer if she
would be interested to help as well. By registration day for the
2015-16 school year, I was able to have an application available for
rising seniors to fill out to be awarded one of the fifteen spots.
Seniors were simply asked general information and what it would mean
to them to be able to get a free senior portrait experience. Four
teachers and administrators agreed to form a panel to decide which
applications would experience the portrait sessions. The process of
getting applications submitted and decisions took a few weeks. Once
the applicants had been decided by the panel, we scheduled everyone’s
appointments for early October and fifteen students had a full
session and were given their photos digitally free of charge. I
worked on set to organize appointments and assist the photographers
however necessary.

The experience was beyond rewarding. While I intended for the experience to enrich my fellow
students, most of the students were just overjoyed to be able to
extend this gift to their parents. I was able to witness firsthand
ripples of giving, which in turn enriched me as a human. Kindness is
limitless. There are ways big and small to extend it. That is what I
took away from this project and will carry with me into the future.
Actions big or small, positive or negative affect the world in which
we live. I choose positive, I choose action, and I choose to make a
difference wherever I can, however I can, whenever I can.

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