Before becoming the Great Strides Program Coordinator at Stevens High School in Claremont , New Hampshire, I was a student in college. In May of 2011, I graduated with a Bachelor’s degree. When I started to look for work, I knew I wanted to find something that I was passionate about – I wanted to help make a difference in people’s lives. I heard about AmeriCorps when I was in college, so I decided to learn more about what was involved. I was excited to see an opportunity for a position at my former high school – I did not realize at the time that I would gain so much from this experience.
I work with incoming freshman who have been identified as needing extra support in the transition to high school. Students in the program receive one-on-one support from myself as well as peer mentors. They are also given opportunities to be involved with service learning programs.
Since the beginning of my service, I have grown tremendously as a professional. I cannot imagine a better opportunity to use my education in a work environment. The students in the program have made great progress – they exhibit a new found maturity and their willingness to participate in community service projects is inspiring. Furthermore, the students are working hard to improve their academics and have set goals for their future. I have built great relationships with the students and have been told that I am one of their favorite teachers because I help them do their work and push them to succeed. I believe the good work we are doing through the AmeriCorps program has truly helped these students make “great strides” as they create the foundation for their future.