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  • Min Ji Choi

Why Would We Volunteer?

By Min Ji Choi
Posted on April 1, 2023
Cover Image Title: Park View
Cover Image by: Min Ji Choi
Classification: Photography
Year: 2021

Why would we volunteer, especially when we are in high school? And when we think about high school, it is the phase when students are very busy with their academic records, friendships, and college decisions. However, volunteerism offers many benefits to others and yourself academically and growth-wise, and I can affirm this through my personal experience in junior year.

The volunteer assignment was a two-day project at Igeslia Evangelica Bethlem Centroamerica, located on the urban side of Guatemala. For two days, I painted the walls, built floors, and taught children. It was not until this volunteering experience that I realized a valuable lesson. During the snack break, people socialized with one another and welcomed the newcomer families to the area. With drinks, snacks, and relaxation, I slid into a deep conversation with a girl my age whom I had just met. She's a new immigrant. We were so different but shared a lot in common. We discussed in great detail our education and the opportunities indicated by education. My heart was saddened after hearing that she was unable to go to high school and further college. But this conversation inspired my thoughts about improving my ability to serve others.

The most impactful work was tutoring a Chinese kid in Korean and math. Initially, I was unsure if I could outperform this time, but I learned that sometimes you need to take risks. Also, taking these opportunities in front of you and putting your whole effort into them is the best option since it teaches you how to be a better person. With that, I tried to find several sources, like books online and at my house, and I watched tutoring videos to reference on how to portray. Besides, due to the 14-hour difference, I rescheduled my agenda and working style. The tutoring program went well and pushed me to be more efficient, ambitious, and patient. It also helped me to grow my strengths and learn about my limitations.

Volunteering is not just a way to make you look good on your resume or have scholarship opportunities. However, it is a way to learn how to be a good leader, not only in the sense of being a good role model to others but also by becoming a better version of yourself at your own pace through the use of time and experience. This is why you should consider volunteering right now. So let’s do it now.

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