Next Steps…

While primarily focusing on achieving the grades I need this semester, I have missed out on participating in any clubs. However, I hope to join at least one next semester. By doing so, I hope to feel like I’m a significant part of the Baruch College community.

One of the resources that have been useful to me here is the faculty’s encouragement. This has motivated me during the stressful times I experience as a college student.

I have used to the library as a support center more than once. I like to go there and just do homework or study. Sometimes I get more work done there than when I’m at home by my desk.

I have decided to look at the future from a different perspective. Being asked the question where do you see yourself in the next three years? An expected answer would be majoring in ­­­______ and getting an internship at ______ or continuing at being successful at school. For me, I want to feel confidently comfortable with who I am, I want to interact with others in a way that will give me a significant place or role, I want to achieve my goals with a sense a fulfillment. I think a combination of these three things will give me a sense of inner-peace. This isn’t a process of self-discovery because I pretty much know who I am.  It’s taking initiatives and making decisions while embracing this identity.

The Community Service Project will have a significant role in this process. I am looking forward to giving myself to others. Service has made me feel like I am part of a community. I think it is a wake up call, it tells me that I am here and I have value because I am able to help others.



Journal #3

Although I have not actually started the Community Service Project, I am extremely excited to start it. I want to get involved, do something meaningful with my life. A meaningful life to me is one I can reflect on and in ten, twenty years tell myself, “That was worth it. I got something out of it. I am a better person because of that – not just a happier person, but a better person.”

I did not use many school resources to necessarily help with the project, but I did use some. I used the skills I learned about the Library, such as the different databases, and websites to find organizations. The usefulness of the databases helped me in other classes like my English class, and my Business Recitation class. They were EXTREMELY helpful at finding great information. Communicating with Dariya, our peer mentor, was also extremely helpful. She always provided great feedback to my group’s questions or draft submissions.

Because of this project, I have thought more about Volunteering. I have thought about how hard it is to find a great organization. As I was asked today when we presented, I do wonder why volunteering becomes such an issue in NYC. There are so many parameters on volunteering that should not be there. If I am willing to give you FREE help, why not take it? I feel like this is a lot of the reason why many New Yorkers are not motivated to volunteer, because it is inconvenient. Many people cannot volunteer every day for 3 hours; they have other obligations. I think there need to be more organizations like New York Cares, which make it easier to volunteer.

In three years, I see myself getting ready for my last semester at Baruch. I see myself having done my Study Abroad in either Spain or the Netherlands, having a couple of internships behind me, and getting ready to graduate with distinguished Honors, perhaps even an Honors Thesis.

-Pamela Ozga


Participating in the Community Service Project has made me realize that it is not as easy as I thought it would be to volunteer for something that we truly want to volunteer for. It has made me realize that even finding an organization to work at is hard, especially if we need to cater to not only our own interests, but others’ interests as well. At first, it was hard to pinpoint a specific interest that all four of us were interested in because we had differing interests and not everyone was comfortable with some of the volunteer work that was brought up. Because of this, we had a hard time finding the right organization to volunteer with.

However, along the way, we were provided with a few websites that helped us each search for organizations that we would want to volunteer with. Through the use of these websites, we were able to compile a list of organizations that we could then narrow down to one specific one, as long as every group member was comfortable with the organization and its mission. Luckily, we were able to agree one of the organizations mentioned: the Wounded Warriors Project organization, whose mission is to help veterans.

Through this process of researching, I was able to build more experience in doing research and learned to identify the more credible websites from the sketchy ones. Doing this process helped me with my research in other classes because I was able to dismiss less credible websites and focus more on the credible ones.

I also learned from doing the Community Service Project that volunteering isn’t just about doing volunteer work for the hours. It is about helping those around you who have helped you or society as a whole, either directly or indirectly. It is about giving back to those people who helped you get to where you are today, whether you know it or not.

Journal #3

It seems as if it were only yesterday that I was writing my first journal entry for our Freshmen Seminar class. Oh how time flies! I can’t believe the first semester of college is already about to come to an end. This first semester has really been very challenging but at the same time I’ve learned a lot.

The Community Service Project has brought our freshmen seminar group closer. At first it seemed like a lot of work and it did not seem easy. But led by Dariya and Mr. Medina who guided us throughout the project, we were able to do a good job. Though it was not easy to come to a decision of where we would like to volunteer, we learned a lot about each other’s interests and passions. The project also led us to learn about the power of teamwork. Though at times it was difficult to reach our other group members, we could not have done such a well job without each other’s help. The project also helped us to realize that working in groups not only is more efficient, it also fosters learning through other’s viewpoints and ideas. Through the research we did for this project I learned how many people in the world really need help and are less fortunate than us. Being part of the honors program where we are endowed with many privileges and advantages that others may not come by easily, I feel we should give back to the community not just to fulfill our requirements but also from the goodness of our hearts because there truly is many people out there that need help.

I was unable to join a club this semester due to time restrictions and also because I wasn’t able to find a club of my interest. However, next semester I do plan on joining a few clubs and next year I plan on trying out for the basketball team here at Baruch which hopefully turns out well for me.

I haven’t found the need to use any of the resources here at Baruch this first semester such as the support centers. However, the library and the honors lounge have been very helpful for me to have some time to catch up on school work. Also I’ve used the gym facilities, especially the basketball courts, to really relieve stress from school work and take a break from reality.

Three years from now I hope to finish my undergraduate studies here at Baruch. I hope to have many internships done through the next three years. I would also like to have done at least a semester of study abroad either in Italy or France. At that time I would be applying for my graduate school studies whether here at Baruch or somewhere else. All this however is pretty far fetched because 3 years down the line is so far away. I hope to get a lot through my college experience here in the next 3 years and I hope to come out of my undergraduate studies as a mature, confident, and independent individual who is ready to face the challenges brought by the working world.

Journal #3

One of the benefits of being a Baruch Scholar is that there are so many resources offered to us. As a student, it is my responsibility to grab hold of these advantages because education is my top priority. When given an assignment as the Community Service Project, it made me realize that I cannot accomplish without others’ support.

This is a community, which means that we need to help one another. I need others’ help and others need my help. I have certain qualities or skills that others doesn’t have and others have knowledge and experiences that I don’t have. As a community we fill in for each other’s weaknesses. And the faculties, mentors, upperclassmen, and peers are people that are offering their help.

There is a librarian that we went to when researching for non-profitable organizations to volunteer in. We also asked our peers. Asking them for help was an efficient way to find an organization to volunteer in for our Community Service Project because they have previous experience in volunteering more than we do. They offered us several recommendations. One of the upperclassmen in my Christian Fellowship Club suggested us to try out the Father’s Heart Ministries. And a pastor in my church also suggested the same organizations. After we research this organization, we saw the various programs they offer and were interested. We went to volunteer for one weekend and enjoyed providing service. This is just the start of opening up and feeling more comfortable in using the resources.

After volunteering, I see that the people we serve in the soup kitchen and me are similar because we both use the resources offered to us. And not only should we take, but that we should also give. In three years, I still see myself studying and using the library resources.

Journal #3

From first setting up our group members, figuring out our Community Service Projects, to actually volunteering in a program, I have learned how to effectively take advantages of the resources Baruch has to offer to gain an upper edge. Dariya, our peer advisor, provided me with lots of advices and ideas I could use to find an organization. However, while our group compiled all our ideas together, none actually satisfied everyone’s tastes or fit their schedule. What started as a desperate search on the web for random organizations (e.g. mentorship, bicycling, walking, etc.) turned fortuitous as Mr. Medina introduced to us to a librarian who was familiar with the wide array of databases that offer legitimate organizations. Moreover, it is from this finding that my group and I decided that soup kitchens would be our major focus for our community service project.

There was also the Volunteering Fair where I was able to speak with individuals representing organizations to learn more about their activities and objectives. Apart from having small talks with the representatives, there were also upperclassmen attending the fair who recommended me the Father’s Heart Ministries, a not-for-profit charitable organization headquartered in lower Manhattan that serve the poor and the needy. It was here that our group finally agreed to devote our time to this organization.

Since I have already volunteered in this project, I grasped the importance of giving back to our community. As Baruch Scholars, we are fortunate enough to receive stipends for our education, while other less fortunate people could not afford their education, or even their basic living expenses. Although my job consisted of carrying boxes to and fro the church, I met and talked to those in need and learned their struggles first-hand.

Through this experience, I have learned the important aspect of reaching out to others for help and advices. While, at heart, I seldom rely on others, it was through this search that I began to understand the usefulness and effectiveness of using external resources, such as the school library, for projects, and hopefully, future assignments. In the next 3 years, not only will I to use these resources for my researches, but I will continue to volunteer and give back to my community.

Journal #2: What does it mean to serve your community?

I think my role as an undergraduate student here at Baruch means that it is my duty to study hard and maintain good grades. I believe that its my job to try my hardest in everything i do and to be a positive influence to those around me. I have this belief because to me, if you are part of a community, then it is your job as well as anyone else’s to help keep that community up and running at its full potential. That applies to non academic things as well. This directly relates to the culture of service the Honor Program promotes. we are all students her at Baruch and those of us in the Honors Programs especially, receive many benefits because of this. That’s why i think the fact that volunteering is part of our curriculum is really important. we receive many benefits (e.g. no tuition, free laptop, amazing resources, etc) whether or not we necessarily NEED them. But, not only are we students, we are also part of the city and the human race. it’s important to always stay humble and appreciative. By encouraging volunteering, it allows us to realize exactly how lucky we have and how we should do everything we can to help others in order to keep our community, as a whole, striving. i think it should be a part of every single person’s mindset, to help out those in need of it and help out the less fortunate (not necessarily humans), and continue to build towards a kinder and more giving human race.

Importance of Community Service

As Baruch students, and as members of greater community, we ought to give back and support the community that has nurtured and continues to nurture us into the people we are today. Being a part of  Baruch Scholars, further reinforces the need to give back. Given the fact that our involvement and participation in school, as well as outside of school, has helped us earn a full scholarship, makes it obvious that the well-being of our community is essential to our success, as well to the success of others.

Although it may be hard to find time to volunteer, and participate in events that do not directly correlate to our long-run academic or professional success, it is still important to do it. Why, you would ask. The answer is simple. Without this community you would have never been able to get where you are today. Thinking on the broader scale, outside of yourself, it is important to note, that one positive action, can and will lead to a chain of events, that will affect many other people.

One of the ways in which the culture of Baruch Honors encourages such behavior, is by creating a requirement for committing some time for volunteering. Some students may see this as an inconvenience, especially their first year, when the pressure to perform is highest. However, having this requirement, may oftentimes provide students with eye-opening experiences, helping them find a passion, while helping their communities grow and improve. Giving back to the community, is thus a responsibility each and every one of is obliged to, and should hesitate to perform.

What does it mean to serve your community?

Serving the New York City community can be done in a number of ways. Simple acts of giving up your seat to an elderly person or opening the door for a disabled person serve the community. This semester and during the Spring 2014 semester, we will be taking further steps towards giving back and helping causes that need attention.  We will be working in NYC and helping the relative causes to our city’s community.

The Honors Program at Baruch has provided us with many benefits and extensive opportunities. These include honors courses, a scholarship, and a Macbook. Therefore, it is our responsibility to give back to the community through sacrificing our time and energy in volunteering. The Honors Program promotes its culture of service through the Freshman Seminar course which focuses on helping the community. Through volunteering, we hope to realize how fortunate we are to have the opportunities that we do.

As we better our communities through service, we better ourselves. We become more generous, understanding, and helpful. Giving has always been better than receiving. It is my role in the program to grow while I experience working as a volunteer in NYC.  I think one of the goals of the program to is to connect students with their surrounding communities.  As we donate our time for the benefit of others, we can find causes that we are passionate about. Hopefully, we will continue to work and volunteer to help the community of NYC.

Journal #2

To serve our community is a way we give back to those less fortunate or those in need. It is a way to show that you care about others and now just dwell in your self-interests. Serving our community should not be looked upon as something we need to do to fulfill a community service requirement. It should be looked upon as something we want to do out of the goodness of our hearts. It should be done to help those that are in need and to bring a smile on their faces. Nothing is more pleasurable and gratifying as knowing you’ve made an impact on someone’s life, or a group of people. I believe serving our community is an obligation we all have to provide opportunities to those who are not given any and to those who are not able to make anything out of what they are given.

Being enrolled in the prestigious Honors Program here at Baruch, we have many resources at our disposable, and many opportunities are presented to us on our road to success. In a sense, we are taking these opportunities given to us. However, we should not only take but also give back. As a Baruch honors program student, it is our responsibility to set a role model for others and for future generations to come, that we should happily and without any interior motive behind it, give back to the community which we’ve been raised in. We should work together in creating an environment that not only prospers, but grows together.

I look forward to volunteering at non-profit organizations here at Baruch and I hope I am able to make a difference in my community. I also hope to meet new people, share new ideas, and come across valuable, perspective-changing experiences whilst serving my community.