I have always considered myself a “big picture” person. I like to think about the larger impact I have on the world around me. Since the landscape of our country is changing, and dangerous voices are bringing out the worst of the systemic issues lurking below the American Dream, it is no longer easy to be the big picture person I was. I find myself trying to find a new purpose for the work that I do that does not involve going into politics.
AmeriCorps has given me a chance to reframe the importance of being in a helping profession in a system that is so broken. Although I am not confronting the root of systemic injustice daily, I am part of a support system for those that are disadvantaged by the system. Some might call this “band-aid” work, but being faced with 44 high school seniors has made me realize that to abandon the “band-aid” altogether is to tell those students that they are less important than the students of our future.
While I do this work, I hope that other leaders in my community continue to focus on changing policy for the better. There is a lot of change that needs to happen over the long term, but the people who exist in the here and now matter, and I want to focus my career on validating those experiences and providing support where I can.
– Julia Serra, College Possible Coach (second term)