Ghandi once said, “The best way to lose yourself is to find yourself in the service of others.” During my time at Pacific I did a lot of “finding myself.” I went through my fair share of “who the hell am I and what am I going to do with my life?”

It was through civic engagement where I found the answers or at least a large piece of it. I started working at the Center for Civic Engagement my freshman year.

I will never forget how satisfied I felt leading my first civic engagement project.

I helped run a cooking club at Neil Armstrong Middle School. It took me a while to build rapport with the students, but after a while they started to trust me. One day we worked as a team to make this really delicious coffee cake.

The students were so proud they could bake something that tasted so good. That’s when I realized how much I loved being a part of the community and giving back.

When you make a difference it does not matter that you are failing biology or figuring yourself out, you helped make the world a better place.

It was because of this realization in which I decided to withdraw from biology and become a social work major instead. By working in the CCE, I get to help other students with their civic engagement projects. There is nothing more rewarding than seeing it all come together and to see how good students feel. I have watched students create dog days, tours for fourth graders and build gardens.

Civic engagement was first thought of as a cornerstone requirement but later became a passion project for students. There is an opportunity out there for everyone to make a difference in his or her own way.

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