Learning from my community to enrich my individual growth

In Uncategorized on November 2, 2009 at 5:53 pm

IMG_2802Every day is a blessing that comes with a new opportunity or a new challenge; however, a new day also gives us the opportunity to rectify our wrongs and strengthen our purposes. It’s as simple as that. It could be that I am optimistic, or it could be that in my everyday life I am able to visualize the many ways I can integrate my passion and my work with the people I care about.

For the last 11 years, it is how I live and what I do. Nobody pays me to care about people, but I feel tremendous self realization when I do that. On the path of embracing diversity, there are many ways to channel inspiration and passion.

Up to now this has been the epitome of my professional development. Helping others to achieve their dreams and being able to create spaces where our community can share experiences in a moment of healthy entertainment and spiritual joy has incredibly enriched my personal and professional growth.

Last Sunday, we hosted the Not-Too-Spooky Halloween: A ‘Dia de los Muertos’ celebration, a multicultural fundraising event to support Hispanic youth access to higher education. It was a four-hour event to celebrate life and death. It featured traditional “Dia de los Muertos” food and entertainment, including story telling, fire dancing and a community altar.

Community Altar

Community Altar

After the event ended, some people came to me and thanked us for the opportunity.  I received a couple of congratulation hugs. Suddenly, I felt a hug on my leg. I looked down and it was Mateo, a three-year old toddler. He was excited and with a big smile told me, “Thank you so much. I had lots of fun.” His little voice touched my heart and once again, I felt that beautiful feeling that tells me you are on the right track.

I am struck by how much this multicultural experience touched other people and myself. I headed home refreshed, renewed, and energized to continue my work.

This multicultural experience has affected me on different levels. Spiritually, my heart soars. Personally, I am blessed to have friends and colleagues who give me support, courage and understanding. Most importantly they believe in me. Professionally, I feel privileged to work with a group of local individuals and organizations that are passionate about multicultural and environmental awareness.movie time

Briselda and I are happy that our initiative has formed such a deep connection between our community and us. As I make the transition from student to alumni, the experience of helping Briselda to achieve her dream to become a journalist goes far beyond being able to use some practical PR tools and journalistic content. I think it is a deep emotional connection that will endure throughout my life because the most important professional development I have ever done is to learn to be more human.

“Community service isn’t about padding one’s resume; it isn’t about doing things so that one might be proud and arrogant about it. But it is the dawning realization of the greater understanding our humanity, our fragility and a greater appreciation of the great lives that so many of us lead and deem to be ‘normal’ – when it pretty much is extraordinary in its own respect relative to many other individuals around the world,”  — Alwyn Loh ‘09.

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