Youth Forward Scholarship Summer 2017 – Giving Gifts Back

Name: Elizabeth Mehesy
From: Elizabethtown, PA
Grade: 10th grade
School: Elizabethtown Area High School
Votes: 0

Everyone has been blessed with different gifts. When we discover what our
gifts are, it is our duty to give back to society by using our gifts.
For those who have more money, they can give to those who have less.
Some people are amazing cooks, and they are able to use that gift to
help out with events that require food and soup kitchens. I have been
blessed with being able to succeed in school. Many subjects are
easier for me than they are for other people, and I am able to attain
high grades with more ease than many. I have been able to give back
by volunteering in my school’s peer tutoring program. Throughout my
high school career, I have tutored and mentored other students.

I was responsible for giving the student I was tutoring additional help in the subject
area that they were struggling in. I normally met with them 2 -3
times a week for about a half-n-hour. I soon learned that my
responsibilities reached beyond that. I communicated with the
teachers of the students to get additional work and see what they
were behind in. I had to look at the student on a broader scope than
their academic performance. I had to evaluate their life overall; to
see the parts of their life that were inhibiting them to do as well
as they could. This allowed me to help the student better, allowing
me not to only be a tutor, but also to be a mentor and confidant.

One of the students that stuck out to me was a student who I will call
Charles. He was struggling in multiple subjects, but he was only
going to one normal class, a math class because he had gotten in
trouble. He was a student who did not care how he did in school. He
was late often, and I never knew when he would show up for tutoring.
However, as I got to know him, I soon realized that he was late so
often because he had to get a younger sibling on the bus when his
parents could not. He did not have a good home life which impacted
what he cared about. It is students like Charles that showed me
everything that goes into being a peer tutor, that a student’s
academics does not give you a full representation of them.

I am unsure of how much I am able to help students. I have had
students who really wanted help, and I knew I was helping them to
improve. But for those like Charles, I never really knew. There is
only so much that I can do. However, as I go into my senior year, and
then into college, I want to continue doing this work for those who I
can help. My academic ability is a gift, so I give back to my
community with it.

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