“I really enjoyed every moment of my service learning experience.”
Ginna still hasn’t decided what course of study she wants to pursue, but because of her service learning experience, she’s a little closer to making up her mind. Ginna took a Women’s Health course under Professor Caree Oslislo. In her words it was an “incredible learning experience” and she thought her teacher was “awesome.” Ginna was given an option to either write a ten-page paper or participate in a service learning experience related to the topics covered in the class. (That’s a “no brainer,” she chose the volunteer project!) Tony Teano, the director of HAVEN, had spoken to her class on AIDS-related issues and she thought that HAVEN sounded like an ideal placement since she knew so little about HIV and AIDS.
“I never gave it much thought—that there may be people living with HIV or AIDS in Annapolis. But there are! Before HAVEN, there wasn’t really a program in the area that helped people facing HIV and AIDS here who had limited resources. So finding people to keep HAVEN running and to volunteer is important for the community.”
The experience had such an impact on Ginna, she continues to volunteer for HAVEN even though her class ended last semester. “Although this may sound very ‘Hallmark’ card-like, I really enjoyed every moment of my service learning experience.”
Ginna plans to transfer to Salisbury University in the fall of 2005. She graduated from Annapolis High School in 2004 but felt that she wasn’t really ready for college. She thought she first needed to “get used to the idea of college.” She’s been sampling a lot of different classes to see what appeals to her. Her experience at AACC has given her the confidence to transfer early to Salisbury. It’s also provided her with an opportunity to work and earn some money. Ginna has managed to earn good grades and feels sure that she can handle the work-load at a four-year institution. The experience in her Women’s Health class also helped her refine her goals.
“The service-learning experience has helped to clarify my personal objectives. I may want to pursue a career in some kind of helping-related field now. I really admire what HAVEN does. I don’t know if I will wind up at a place like HAVEN, but I do know that I want to do something that involves helping people.”