Service Learning Through the Eyes of a Student

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While most students are up late texting their friends about their weekend plans or on the phone making googly eyes with their crush, this isn’t true for WKU senior Christian Cartwright. She is up at one and two o’clock in the morning texting her group members about new ideas to further their service-learning project.

Cartwright is currently taking Cultural Connections and Diversity. She says she is so engaged in her service-learning class that it has simply become another conversation in her daily life. She is currently working on a project that raises awareness and educates people within the community about the African American Studies Museum. Her project is part of a $100 Solution project that teaches students how to make a difference with only 100 dollars.

For Cartwright service learning isn’t simply a class to enrich the learning experience behind community service, but it is a one of a kind opportunity to learn about yourself and ways that you can make a difference in areas that you are passionate about. For Cartwright this meant giving back to her hometown.

I think just about every college student can admit to saying how they’d jet away from their hometown the first chance they got. Most of the time we get to college and meet people from all walks of life, and because of that we are excited to experience what life would be like somewhere else.

We have lived in our hometowns our whole lives, and now we are making decision for ourselves. First on our list is a new city to pursue our future interests. According to a New York Times report titled, “Where Young College Graduates are Choosing to Live” by Claire Cain Miller, recent college graduates and young adults as a whole are choosing to move away at a fast rate – about a million cross state lines each year. (Miller. 2014)

Although, Cartwright admitted to initially wanting to move away just like the rest of us she was motivated when she saw others coming back to her hometown and building up the community. She came from one of the poorer communities in her hometown. Now she’s inspired to raise awareness for the needs in her city and specifically in her community.

She hopes that one day the community will get back to a sense of unity where everyone feels like family and neighbors help one another. According to Cartwright once you’ve obtained the success that you had hoped for giving back is crucial to seeing the younger generation achieve that same success.

Upon graduation in the spring, Cartwright will go back to her hometown and work with the city outreach program that helps rebuild her community in the west end of Louisville.

Service learning isn’t something you can just half do. It requires giving up your time for the betterment of others. From Cartwright’s experience in service learning she suggests starting small. She says you cannot save the world, but you can impact someone’s life that can affect someone else’s life and it will trickle down like a chain reaction.

Work Cited:

Miller C.C.(2014, October 20) Where young college graduates are choosing to live. The New York Times. Retrieved from. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/20/upshot/where-young-college-graduates-are-choosing-to-live.html?_r=0

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