Youth Forward Scholarship Winter 2017 – Service Learning

Name: Pristina Arenas
From: Vista, CA
Grade: junior
School: University of California Merced
Votes: 0

I
was quiet, impatient, and felt isolated my freshman year of high
school. After joining clubs my sophomore year, I met new people and
my personality grew. I took action and joined some clubs, which made
me more outgoing, not only in those clubs but also in classes. I have
been an active member of various clubs recognized nationwide
including AVID, K.E.Y Club, Link Crew, and MEChA. AVID is a club
that, as the program, promotes college education through success in
high school. As Treasurer, I participate in school and community
events, and plan events to raise money for the school’s AVID program.
I have also become a dedicated AVID tutor to the growing program.
 Having held officer positions in each of these clubs, it was my
responsibility to find various community service opportunities that
aid in the clubs’ goal of promoting higher education, pride in
one’s actions through self determination and community involvement,
and to push other students to do the same.

By
being involved in various clubs, I also found a passion for community
involvement. Besides participating in community service events with
my clubs throughout highschool,  I have now been volunteering at
a local homeless shelter for the last three years, which I have
shared with fellow students so that they can assist their community
as well. Operation Hope Vista is a homeless shelter and outreach
program for women and families. My responsibilities included planning
activities with the children while the parents were in meetings,
tutoring children after school, and greeting clients and working in
reception. I saw what an impact a group of students can have on
campus, and I am proud . Working and learning with peers provides
students such as myself with the opportunity to help each other when
needed and give each other feedback so that more students improve.


Enjoying
giving back to the community, these positions have encouraged me to
be involved in my new community as I start my journey in college at
University of California, Merced. Communication and inquiry are key
when it comes learning the skills that will give you the ambition to
succeed.  High school has given me a new outlook on my future.
My family came to the United States and took a chance toward a better
future for them, our families, and future generations such as myself.
I’ve learned from my past that I can change the future, my future.
Having completed over three hundred hours of community service in
high school, I can say I definitely plan to continue to serve my
community no matter where my future takes me. I am attending college
not only to benefit myself, growing both mentally and academically,
but in honor the struggles my family faced, and to motivate future
generations to do the same.


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