Saturday, May 28, 2011

A new chapter

Today is the last day of our immersion trip with AFLV and the Leadership Institute-Women With Purpose. I have had quite a few "last" days this past month and for once I am actually feeling the sadness of a conclusion. I graduated from Fresno State exactly a week ago and today everything seems to be settling in. This service trip was a way for me to get out into the world after graduation, and it has done just that and more. I was able to meet amazing women who allowed me to reflect with them as they continue their Greek experience. The experience both on site with Habitat for Humanity and during our evening leadership discussion allowed me to open up and evoke dreams of my future. As I said a few time during this trip, I am here able to wrap up my Greek experience and begin my new journey as an alumni.

While building I was constantly moving, helping, and talking. The entire week at the build challenged my energy and provoked my mind. It was the ultimate way to fulfill myself, because I was helping to fulfill others. I learned more about my ability to work in a team and handle my frustration. A small incident could have given me reason to give up, but I knew there was only reason to keep going. The build allowed me to reflect on the times in my college and Greek career and recognize those times I may have given up. It all is a learning experience, but for the women here who will go back to their chapters in Fall; they will now have the ability to strive for the good and see the importance of their actions. I will now be able to use my actions in the real world, helping those around me gain confidence and strive for their goals.

The short amount of time at the site, will still provide a lasting impact for a family or individual. This thought is addicting and for me something I want to continue. All of this has been solidified in my life within the past week. These things have been introduced to me while being a Greek member, but now my leadership skills, personal development, and desire to make a change is continuing nto my professional world. There is no better good than a good that changes you and helps others.

Thank you to the Habitat for Humanity for changing lives, the amazing women I met this past week, Erin and Tricia for their guidance and planning this trip, and to all the Greek organizations who have changed all of our lives for the better.

Lauren Smoot is a recent graduate of California State University Fresno and a member of Delta Gamma.

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