Part of a Team

By Katie Steen October 25, 2013

Directly after each event that I have helped to facilitate this semester, including Service Saturday, the Storytime Library Event, and Make-a-Difference Day, someone has come up to me and congratulated me for my work, which has usually been followed by some sort of comment about how impressive it is that I pulled the event off all by myself. The truth is if I had pulled any of those off by myself, I would be extremely impressed too. In fact, I would be completely incredulous, because doing that kind of work with no support would basically make me superwoman. I am not superwoman, and none of those events would have happened without the work of a wonderfully cooperative, supportive team. 

Being able to wake up on the morning of Make-a-Difference Day and feel almost no stress about the day was a testament to how well-prepared an event can be when a group of really invested, passionate and hard-working people collaborates on it. This summer, I worked for a non-profit where I was basically the only person working more than ten hours per week, and I was always alone in the office. I had the “support” of a lot of people to whom I could send e-mails with inquiries or call if I was in a bind. However, I did not feel like there was a consistent team that would share my to-do lists, be in constant communication with me, and have quick brainstorming sessions whenever needed. Being isolated like that and attempting to engage a community in an issue I was really personally passionate about was more difficult than I ever could’ve imagined. At the time, I thought it was just a bi-product of working in the non-profit sector, but now I realize that all I needed was a little bit more support and sense of a leadership team. Having that now, I feel extremely blessed and I know that as a team we can do so much more for our community than I could ever do alone.

I would like to thank everyone who has helped to plan and facilitate these events, including Abby Juhasz, Rose Haag, and all of the Community Service Interns. I also want to acknowledge all of the people who have indirectly helped by being supportive of our efforts and always being willing to answer nitpicky questions about poster design or tech issues such as the executive and technology interns, Susan Prudente, and all of the staff in the Student Engagement Center. Everything that we do is a reflection of the incredible collaboration in our office, and I am so lucky to call myself a part of this team.