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Being Men And Women With And For Others

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Alexa Vega

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Being Men and Women with and for others is a big part of what it means to be a Xavier College Prep student. Every student is required to do about 70-80 service hours throughout their four years at Xavier. Volunteering helps students gain knowledge about the people in our valley and assists us in understanding their stories. Working with people who are less fortunate, tutoring kids, volunteering at food distribution centers opens students’ eyes so they know the reality of the kind of world we live in. This school year, Seniors are required to do 10 service hours. There are a couple of students who already completed their requirement due in no small part to the practice of Magis–responding to the call of more.

Alexis Naranjo (RenWeb)

Alexis Naranjo (Senior)  is a student who completed (at the time of this publication) 300 service hours. During the summer of her Sophomore year, she started volunteering at Desert Regional Medical Center. Alexis stated, “At the time, I wasn’t even sure if my service counted towards my hours for school. Volunteering at the hospital was something I had always wanted to do solely for myself.” Alexis worked alongside others who felt as strongly as she did about the well-being of others. Alexis explained, “This shared passion created a path for me to develop strong relationships with my Hospital fellow volunteers, employees, and the patients.” Alexis’s motivation was her grandmother’s passing away from Parkinson’s Disease. Alexis said, “My experience of helping care for a sick person helped me discover my intrinsic qualities.”

When Alexis volunteered at Desert Regional Medical Center she was part of the ‘Volunteen’ program. The purpose of this program is to make the experience for the patients the best it can be.  “As a volunteer, it was my job to make them feel comfortable. Sometimes all it took was a simple “Good Morning” and some days I would spend hours talking to a single patient,” she commented.

Practically speaking, service hours are often accomplished as a way to get additional attention from colleges and universities.  And some students do service hours to look good. Alexis suggested more. She said, “ …volunteering has helped me develop as a person. It has presented me with amazing opportunities. I can wholeheartedly say that volunteering at the hospital is the best thing I’ve ever done, and I can’t wait to go back this summer.”

Alexis learned life lessons from her volunteer experiences. She said “…the biggest equalizer in our society is storytelling and the sharing of one’s self. Countless doors of understanding, compassion, and empathy are opened when we take the time to actively listen to one another. I have also learned to make your experiences worthwhile by always being committed and always being present. Showing up is half the battle and your presence is more of a gift than any skill set you have to offer.”

Cambria McCalla (RenWeb)

Another Xavier student, Cambria McCalla (Senior), also completed at least 360 service hours which is, again, more than what was required. Throughout high school, Cambria was always involved with service. She stated, “I’ve been part of Young Life since my Freshman year, and I have been a student leader since Junior year. I had an amazing opportunity to do work crew this summer where you go volunteer at camps. They assign you all these different jobs. You go serve for about a month with 60 complete strangers and they become some of your best friends.” Cambria was not thinking about service hours while volunteering; she simply did it because she enjoyed doing it. Young Life, the organization for which Cambria volunteered, is a faith-based organization. Young Life’s purpose is to invite kids and teens to be together in a safe place where they can be themselves and explore their relationship with God. Cambria also did volunteer work at the Mission Hills Retirement Community. Cambria continues to work mainly with these two organization. There are great benefits from doing service hours but Cambria genuinely enjoyed it because she loves helping others.

Being Men and Women with and for others is important. Xavier invites everyone to consider ways to be there for each other to make the world a better place. Service hours don’t have to be a bad thing–these two students found that volunteering enriched their lives. Consider being Open to Growth! Get ready to learn more about the people in Xavier’s greater community!

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About the Writer
Alexa Vega, Writer

I'm a senior this year, and I'm very to excited to work with the school Publications team. I love to take pictures and hiking. I plan to study business...

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