What do you love about your team?
Katherine Zyniecki March 16, 2020 Reflections from Changemakers 52
The best teams are those that have fun together. What do you love most about your site team (Bonners, staff at your site) and your Bonner family? How do they support you? And how do you support them?
I haven’t really had a chance to dive in and interact with my on site Bonner team this semester. However, I’ve had great fellow bonners at my site in the past and from past experience I can say that having other Bonners at my site that understand what we do and why is really a relief and a breath of fresh air. My site I feel has yet know what a Bonner really is and don’t think they will ever understand at the same level that another Bonner would so I feel appreciated and supported by my Bonner team on site. Stepping up to my sophomore and junior year, I had the opportunity to take a few baby bonners under my wings and help them out to balance their social and academic life with their service life. I also had the pleasure to help some of them on their own individual projects for the club like Julia and her Spanish club on Thursdays. With this being said, I strongly feel I have gained as much support from other fellow Bonners as much as I have been able to help them and that is what makes our little team work!
What do you love most about your site team (Bonners, staff at your site) and your Bonner family? How do they support you? And how do you support them?
I love a lot of things about my site team, they’re supportive, kind, and easy to talk to. But what I love most about the Bonner “family” is that everyone would go out of there way to do something for someone else, everyone is genuine and very supportive with school and non school issues. They support me by always answering my questions and by being there for me to talk to when I need a friend to rely on. I do my best to support them by always saying hi when I see them and spending time with them when we’re not at meetings or service. I also make sure they know that I’m here if they ever wanted to talk to me, whether it’s about something that’s bothering them or if they just want someone to talk to.
I really enjoy working with my team at Catholic Charities Executive Office. The office shows me a great representation of the capital region. I’ve heard so many great stories, learned so much about the area, and have had such a great time seeing how catholic Charities impacts the community. I especially love working with siena alums and comparing our experiences. The office keeps a fun and exciting environment by celebrating holidays and keeping the joy in every day! I’ve noticed that when everyone brings a positive attitude the whole workplace better.
I have so much love for my Capital Roots team! When I first joined the program last year, everyone was so welcoming and made my transition in much easier. This year, we have gained a couple of awesome freshmen that have made our team even stronger. As a group, we always have a ton of fun together and are always there to support each other in any aspect of life. Amelia has been an awesome site team leader and has always been there for each of us through our challenges and achievements at our site, and through life in general. Capital Roots also has a great staff that I have had the opportunity to work with. They all have so much passion for the work that they do and I really admire this, especially now through this challenging time as they continue to provide their resources for people in need. I’m also so grateful for the whole Bonner family! Since I joined the program, Siena has really become my home. The friendships and support I have found through Bonner have made all the difference in my college experience so far and I am so thankful to be a part of this family!
I truly adore each of my fellow Bonners that serve at Castle Island along with Diane and the rest of the staff! Having such cohesive, yet independent, lively, but focused, group of people so dedicated to the development and progression of such an amazing site is such a blessing, to put it lightly. Looking back to when I was the only Bonner at Castle Island during my freshmen year, I wouldn’t have imagine in my wildest dreams that the Bonner team would expand so much and that Bonner would be completely integrated into Castle Island’s operations. Every Bonner at Castle Island is so essential and is part of what makes it such a great site to serve at. Although I unknowingly had my last day of service a couple weeks ago, I am so glad that it was a typical day of serving alongside my peers, working on capstone, having some laughs (both with and without Diane!), and embracing the Castle Island community. Castle Island will forever hold a special place in my heart, right next to Diane, and the amazing team of past and present Bonners devoted to Castle Island: Harriet, Marlie, Michael, Pierre, and Sam. B-love to all <3
I love being able to serve at RISSE! Our team at RISSE is just me and Kayla, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I love that even though me and Kayla are never there at the same time I know I can always go to her if I have any questions. She is always willing to listen to whatever I have to say and help in anyway. This whole transition into RISSE was made so much easier because from the beginning she was always there! Kayla has also shown me the importance of advocating for myself and stepping outside of my comfort zone! As for bonner at a whole, I have always been so grateful to have a whole group of people that just love and support each other! It is such a welcoming environment that have made this transition into college so much easier!
The thing I love most about my site team is how patient and helpful they are. Not once did I feel judged for asking a question or needing to hear directions repeated. That goes for Bonners and staff, and it’s made me feel appreciated and wanted from day one. Same for the Bonner family on campus, everyone genuinely wants to help you. The issue was never finding someone to support me, it was deciding who would support me first. I’ve been supported in countless ways, from personal or life advice to helping me grow and expand my ideas. This family has helped me expand my comfort zone and broaden my understanding of nearly every social justice issue we have covered. My freshmen friends have given me a home away from home and I think I’ve given them that too. Which is the most important thing you can give one another when in an unfamiliar place (thinking back to last semester).
When it comes to Sunnyside I see them as my second family. When I first joined the staff and Catholic Charities as a whole took me in. Within Sunnyside, I enjoy each conversation I have with the staff each day I’m. We always share our background stories which made us connect on a different level. As well I love the reason why some of the staff are there. For them it’s not about the money it’s more about giving back, some of them even went through the Sunnyside program when young. When it comes to Bonner I like seeing everyone that’s there because we bring a different perspective table. Bonner is always growing and our core values for services make our bond stronger.
I absolutely love serving at Unity House and could not as for a better Bonner or staff! This semester was the first time I shared my service time with Abby and Abeer. Serving with Abeer has definitely lightened a lot of stressful times. We always find time to joke around and still get all of our work done. Abby is an amazing Site leader who truly believes in me and Abeer. She challenges us to do our best every day and pushes us out of our comfort zones. Abby is also amazing because she always checks in on me and Abeer, helps us work through our challenges, and keep us organized. She really does go above and beyond! Along with the Bonners, the staff at Unity House is also great. Everyone is very supportive of all of us and have a great sense of humor. Like Abeer said, everyone is very close kit at Unity House. We support each other by giving positive and helpful feedback when needed and by having an open mind and heart. As for the B-Fam, I could not ask for a better group. It is a relief to know that I have so many people to go to if I ever need help or support. Everyone is so passionate about their service and are ready to take on any kind of challenge. I truly admire everyone and the hard work they put in every day!
I love my Bonner family at my service site. What I love most about them is that we are goal and task oriented. At our site we come in every day with an objective or have previously decide long term goals to wrk on when there are no daily task and objectives to complete. I also love my Bonner family as well they keep me accountable and they are always supportive tasking us to be the best versions of ourselves that we can be! I have learned time management skills through my fellow bonners, I have learned compassion, acceptance and hard work. This is the best team that I could have ever wanted!
The Bonner family as a whole has always been my team. From day -15 of my freshman year (we love Summer Gear Up), you all have been the ones consistently there for me throughout my college experience at Siena. I am still in contact with our alumni, and will be sure to remain in contact with my underclassmen after I graduate in the upcoming months. I know that my Bonners will always be there for me when I call, just as I would show up for any one of them. My team from IPH and all of my PA teams will always hold special places in my heart, as they helped foster my love of service and value of social justice in action. So many of my favorite memories are with you all, thanks for being in them!
My site team is currently quite succinct (consisting of myself). One positive is that attendance and accountability have been easy to take. However, I know I am not alone in this, as I have my site supervisor, other employees at WY, ACE admin, and fellow Bonners checking in regularly. It has been a pretty productive year at WY but I cannot wait to expand this site to other Bonners. There have been many times between this semester and last that I would have loved to have Bonners. Thinking back, I had a blast with my site team at Castle Island. Particularly when Michael and I served together or when Harriet, Kylie, and I were together. We were always able to have fun while helping each other on our projects.
Although my site team is small (Kiara and myself), I think we make a pretty good team. We are constantly bouncing new ideas off of each other and figuring ways to help the students at Green Tech. Because it is just the two of us, we are able to do these things in a more informal and relaxed dialogue too which is always nice! As far as the Bonner team as a whole, I have always been grateful of the support and welcomeness from the upperclassmen ever since our first day on campus. My goal is to follow their lead in welcoming each new class of Bonners.
Glad that you guys have such a great work-dynamic! Sometimes it’s nice to have that co-collaboration! I always notice the great things being done at green-tech, so keep up the great work!
My site team really just consists of me and Agnes (and Amelia who is a FANTASTIC volunteer with the program) Not having an underclassmen at my site is a new experiences and definitely different from my experiences at Girl Scouts but has been super rewarding. Me and Agnes have been able to develop a close and interpersonal relationship at the site and I feel like we can really express ourselves and our work styles. I think this has been very helpful because this is going to be very representative of work I would like to do in the future . Another thing about being solo at a site is that I have personal responsibility which was definitely a growing pain for me but something I am glad I learned. Once again I could not do it without Agnes who is absolutely one of my social justice icons and I am so grateful for the opportunities I have had working with her!
I feel incredibly fortunate to have had supportive site teams throughout my time as a Bonner. While at Catholic Charities, Sister Betsy (my site supervisor) and Shayla (my STL, Class of 2019) encouraged me to challenge myself and to advocate for myself. My main supervisors at Mercy House created an environment where I constantly felt supported and was able to learn more about the issue of homelessness.
Since moving into the role of PA, my fellow PAs, especially our seniors Jamie and Draya (they’re the best), have helped me to learn how to be a PA. As a PA, it is important that we constantly support one another and accommodate to any changes that we experience during the semester so that we can continue to support our fellow Bonners. We are also fortunate to have the staff at the ACE office that allows us to ask questions when we need help or help us to create trainings.
We love having you on the team now too! Can’t wait to see what y’all do next year.
Although I don’t have any other Bonners at my site, I absolutely love the staff that works there. Since there is only Jaime, Sarah, Amilynn, and I, it was really easy to feel welcomed. Jaime is always able to make me laugh and service is definitely more lively when she is there. Even though there is a big difference in age, I never feel like I’m being belittled because of it. It’s actually the opposite, since we are such a small team I know what I do for them really matters, and that pushes me to work harder. I may not have the most exciting workload sometimes, but Sarah always tries to give me work that is important and would be beneficial for me. I know that the staff at Girls on the Run will always support me and they have been the best to work with this year. As for the Bonner family, I am extremely grateful. I have met some of my best friends because of this program. Everyone has been really welcoming since day 1, and it’s been super amazing getting to know more about everyone throughout the year.
Now that I am alone at my site, I will talk about when I was at the Boys and Girls Club. I loved how we would all support each other no matter what. I loved that we would always try to help each other created new ideas for the kids. It really was a great team that we had! The staff was also amazing and they were always willing to support you in any way possible. We would have check-ins to see how everyone was doing and if they needed any help. I supported them by also being there when they needed help with any projects. We really became a smaller family within the Bonner program.
At CMA, my team has the most fun while serving. Since we serve with teens, it is impossible to have a steady, peaceful day. It is chaos throughout our entire program time and we wouldn’t have it any other way. Even during office time, Crystal, Max, and I are joking nonstop which makes for a super fun and welcoming service site. While I complete my service work, Crystal and Max guide me and help me with whatever I need which is super helpful since it is my first time in an office atmosphere.
My bonner family is one like no other. I have met my absolute best friends through Bonner (shoutout JPJ, MK, Steph, and everyone else except Tori). All jokes aside, I am so grateful for all the people I have made connections with through this program. It is truly the people that make it so special.
Love the mix of fun and work. Always great to have people you can laugh with!
I’ve really had amazing TRIP team members since joining Bonner! The other bonners at TRIP have been able to bond over our office jokes, mutual relationships with staff, as well as some amazing events that have brought TRIP and Bonner together. The annual dinner every year brings us together and reminds TRIP Bonners why TRIP is so special. Overall, the Bonner community brings us together and supports each other during difficult times, which has been highlighted throughout this pandemic.
Y’all have always seemed to have such a cohesive site team through the years. I’m glad it’s still going!
My Green Tech team is caring and supportive. Since the day I started at GTH I’ve felt welcome. My experience there is even better when my fellow Bonners are there as well. A highlight of my time at GTH last semester was dinner duty with Tristan because it allowed us to complete service together and see all of the students in a relaxed setting. The greater Bonner community at Siena is an amazing support system and a group of like minded individuals to bounce ideas off of.
At my site I have the most fun when we do tasks with the youth, specifically when we have to teach them. It is fun to guiding the high schoolers through tasks and teaching them about tools and how to achieve a task. I also like going on field trips with the group and learning about new places and cool things like maple syrup or Siena college. They help me stay cheery throughout the day and let talk to me about how school is going and how to combate problems. I like to do the same for the students who I talk with everyday.
The Bonner family is fun everyday, in all the saturday service events and meetings. I feel supported when they simply ask me how I am and ask me how my day is going. I like to do that same for them and remind them I am always available to talk and work through issues.
There are so many things that I love about my site team, as well as my Bonner family! First, my site team. I don’t have a site team of Bonners, the employees at my site are truly one of a kind! What I love most about them is that they are so friendly and relaxed. Even when things are not going so great, or the work being done isn’t the most fun they are always enthusiastic. They always give me a warm welcome when I come into service each day and check up on me weekly. It means a lot to me that I have such great support at my site.
What I love most about my Bonner family is that we all can be unapologetically ourselves around one another. Since day one each and every member of our Bonner family have been such a great help in the crazy transition from high school to college. The upperclassmen were super helpful when it came to the do’s and don’ts of Siena College. I have definitely made life long friends through this program and it is safe to say that they will always have my back and I will always have theirs!
It’s so great that you have felt supported even without having other Bonners at your site. We as upperclassman are always here for you!
Even though the team at BGCCA has become smaller this semester, it nice to say that we all are passionate about our site. Julia and Lilli have truly helped me to acclimate to the site and become comfortable working alongside the kids and staff. I enjoy the conversations we have, out time getting to interact with the kids, and outside events such as Red, White, and Chocolate. It’s amazing getting to know individuals who care about the community and being able to bond through that. When I first started at my site I was very reluctant because it was overwhelming, but I had so much support from my site team. The work all the Bonners do truly unite us and I love being a part of such an inspiring and compassionate group.
My love my site team! Kate, Dana, and Steph are just such amazing people who are always there for me and everyone as a whole. Dana and Kate have really been there for me during my freshman year as I begin a new journey in my life. Steph is fun to talk to you and has a positive attitude. I’m grateful for all of them. I really miss the Roarke Center and those who I serve with. I really miss the conversations we have and those who we serve too! I am so grateful for the Bonner family and for welcoming me into this wonderful community. Katie is amazing and always there for us!! You guys are amazing and full of optimism and leadership. I hope you and your families are all staying healthy. I wish you all the best.
I am so happy to hear that during your freshman year you feel supported in many ways through the Bonner Program. It is truly the best support system I have had during college. I miss serving too, but hoping to get the chance before this semester ends! Hope all is well!
I love that my NExT team works so cohesively together. With the nature of my project and the multitudes of people involved it is so important to work as a cohesive group, and highlight the talents of each member. My team is also very flexible and communicates frequently and effectively.
They are very supportive in scheduling check-in’s as a team and individually to guarantee that everyone has the tools that they need to succeed. They also provide me with useful feedback in my research that allows me to grow and improve in the project. I try to maintain the same level of support in return, and make it known that I am there for them in whatever capacity they need
I love to hear that your team works cohesively together! I think that is so important as a team. I think they wouldn’t be able to do this without such an amazing leader like you! You rock lady.
When I applied for Bonner, I never expected for my site to be such a welcoming and fun place. At my site, United Tenants of Albany, all the staff and volunteers are like a family, we all work together and we encourage each other. I love the sense of family and how our site isn’t just “work”. We all know the important work we do to aid others in the community so we also tend to each others needs. Being the first Bonner to ever volunteer at my site, there was a huge flexibility as to how my peers perceived not just me but also the future volunteers that choose to join our site. An amazing thing my director has done to support me is to agree to arrive at the office an hour early so that I could complete my hours, she typically would arrive at 9, but she agreed to open an hour earlier just to tend to my needs, and I think that shows an enormous amount of care, when it comes to staff. To support my peers at United Tenants of Albany, I opened myself up to any work, or challenge they had for me, I did not limit it to one type of work, but to anything they needed my help in. As our small community helps the community of Albany, I believe it is also important to care for each other!
Stephanie, that is amazing! It is so kind of your supervisor to open up early, which shows how much they appreciate your service too. Keep up the great work!
I’m so glad to hear about the support at your site! It is amazing to have such a great group that you feel that you can rely on and that you are excited to be part of.
I don’t really have a site team, but I count my site team as Aedan, Mathew, and people associated with Avillage. Something I appreciate about my site team is that they are very flexible and understanding. My project is constantly changing to fit the community needs, therefore it’s important to have team members who are patient, causal and adaptable. I also appreciate the fact that we bring many different talents and perspectives to the project at hand. Because of that, the project has flourished and the community is benefiting because of it.
The backbone of the team is definitely Dr. Kassel. I appreciate her motivation for continuing to work even when I’m feeling down and stagnant. She carries the team, and delegates tasks so that we can work on the project successfully. Dr. Kassel is an awsome supervisor to the project.
Although I am a fairly new member of Castle Island’s team, they have definitely welcomed me with open arms and have really helped to ease my stress and nerves as I transitioned to a new site. Both my fellow Bonners and Diane have helped me to feel at home at Castle Island and are always willing to answer any questions I have. I have come to love this team even though I have been with them for a short time. We are able to laugh and make jokes but also have tough conversations and work together to solve any problems that may arise. I support this team by giving my all and being willing to take on any task that is thrown my way. As a new member, I have not yet taken on larger or long term projects, so I instead look to aid both Diane and the other Bonners on projects they are working on until I acquire my own.
As a Bonner who has seen many transitions and faced many challenges both as a Bonner and as an individual thought my college career, I truly don’t know what I would have done without my Bonner family. Even though there have been times when I have had to take a step back from the program, Bonners always took time to check in with me to see how I was doing. Moreover, when I returned back to the program after my absence, it was like I never left. I am truly grateful for this community and will continue to do what I can to support my fellow Bonners the way they have supported me! 🙂
I am so glad to hear things at your new site this semester is going well. It makes me happy to hear that you are enjoying your site. I can’t wait to see what you do in the future!
There are many things I love about my site team and my Bonner family; I could not imagine my first year at Siena without them! At my site, it is great to have Mara and Abby by my side because we can always have fun and help one another while we are getting work done. Along with the Bonners, the rest of the staff at Unity House is always supportive of our ventures, and they are always willing to help with our pursuits, both big and small. The personnel at Unity House are pretty close knit, so we all support each other by understanding situations and offering help accordingly. In regards to the Bonner family, it is amazing to have so many friends around campus, and people I know I can depend on/can depend on me for support. Along with Katie and Rocky, I love that we are such a passionate, unique group of individuals who aren’t afraid to stand up for what is right and constantly support each other and the communities around us.
I’m so glad to see that the Unity House crew is still going strong! I miss everyone there and am happy to know that you have the opportunity to work with such a close group of people who constantly supports you.
Although I am the only Bonner at my site, I still have a great support team. From the very beginning, the staff at Troy Prep High School welcomed me with open arms. They treat me with respect and kindness and act like I’m one of their colleagues. Anne Glynn, the Siena College Writing Director, has also been another huge support system for me throughout this journey at my new site. Our bi-weekly check-in meetings help me stay on task and teach me all the ins and outs of what an effective writing center looks like. She is an extremely hard-working, caring person and I have learned so much from her over these past few months. The principal, my site supervisor, Anne Glynn, and I communicate weekly and I believe this communication plays into our mutual support system.
As a part of the Bonner family, I have received so much support these past two years. I think it goes without saying that Bonners support Bonners. We all experience the same happiness and stress when we serve 8-10 hours a week, so I think simply being there for one another is extremely important. Bonner has given me lifelong friendships and I’ll always support my fellow Bonners. <3
It’s so cool that your supervisor and other mentors you work with are so supportive of you! It sounds like they’re always there for you and that you can certainly lean on them when needed. And I agree that Bonners support Bonners!! This program has given us great friends and experiences.
What I love most about the PA team is that we always find ways to have fun in the office even while having lots of work to do! I’ve been fortunate to have 4 awesome PAs alongside me teaching me the ropes this semester. Coming into the position was definitely not an easy transition, especially while also navigating working without Katie there in the office with us. However, having Rocky to lean on has been super helpful, as well as the other ACE admin in the office! I love that our Bonner family as a whole is always there for one another. It’s nice to be able to say hello to other Bonners throughout campus (and now online I guess…) and to always know that we have each others’ backs. They give me a solid support system! I hope everyone in our Bonner family knows that I’m always here for them for anything!
I love my PA team! We have undergone some new changes as a team this year, but we work very well together. I love that my team works hard and also plays hard. We know the tasks we have to get done, but we manage to also have fun in the office ie whiteboarding messages and pranks! I do not know what I would do without my Bonner family. I have made life long friendships through this program and I am so grateful. My fellow Bonners have always shown me support when I need it (shoutout to people who were in my capstone class). I hope I have supported Bonners when they needed it too. I am so thankful for my Bonner family. I hope everyone is staying safe, healthy, and sane during this crazy time. I b-love you all!
Draya, you are a great PA! Thank you for answering all of my recruitment questions, it has been so helpful to have your support!
I love so many things about my site team. I appreciate that we can laugh and have a good time together, but also know how to accomplish tasks together and be serious when necessary. I love the entire team that I get to serve with at Unity House. The development department has been so supportive of my ideas and projects like the Pop Up and my capstone project and have been enthusiastic and helpful in my professional and personal development. My site team has given me support in my role as site team leader by giving me constructive feedback and confiding in me with their obstacles and successes. I try to support Abeer and Mara through leading by example, talking with them individually or as a team, and sometimes giving tough love and pushing them to work harder or do something they’re unsure about while supporting from afar so that they can gain confidence and experience. They have both impressed me with their willingness to dive into new projects and experiences and it is truly amazing to see them both continue to grow and challenge themselves. I appreciate all of the enrichment and growth that this team and family provides me daily.
You continue to amaze and impress me with all the great things you have done at UH. It’s been so cool watching you become a mentor for Abeer and Mara and I’m excited to see what the rest of your time there brings you!
I love my site team because of how independent and willing to advocate for themselves each member of my team is. The staff and my fellow Bonners at Capital Roots really work together in order to provide any support necessary to each member of the team. My team supports me by providing a calm presence in the face of stress and anxiety. They support me by making me laugh or letting me vent about my frustrations when that is what I need. I try to do the same in return. My goal is to give as much to my team as I receive through their kindness and support.
Hmmm it’s hard to pick something I love about my service when there’s so much to love. Our team at RISSE is small, but mighty. My sweet Sam Lunt has grown immensely since her time at RISSE and it’s an honor to watch her do so. She has pushed herself to serve deeper with larger projects she sees as beneficial to her students. She advocates for herself and reaches out when she needs assistance in professionally approaching a topic that may be hard to bring up with supervisors. I get excited to go to meetings so we can fill each other in on what’s come up since the last time we spoke. This smiley, intelligent, beautiful blond lady is without a doubt one of my favorite things about serving!
I agree, one of the best parts about being an upperclassman is watching our freshman grow!
My site team always manages to have a lot of fun together. At our Fall Fiesta the past two years, the Castle Island staff has come together for a night of fun while also raising money for our school. The staff and Bonners have had fun taco tasting and salsa dancing together at this event. During a normal school day we all enjoy the presence of about thirty children in one building together, the majority of which are six years old and younger. With so many small children around, there’s always something to laugh about, such as picture day just two weeks ago when the young students were asking us how to smile. I enjoy the light-hearted atmosphere of our developing school and I am appreciative of the Castle Island staff and my fellow site team Bonners for making service a fun and memorable experience.
As a part of the Bonner family, I have been given an amazing support system in my first two years of college. Bonner has given me some of my best friends at Siena and I couldn’t imagine my time at the college without them. The Bonner family is amazing because not only do we support each other every Wednesday night, but we support each other all around campus as well. Having fifty fellow students to say hi to around campus and make conversation with has meant a lot to me throughout college. I’m grateful for the support system that the Bonner family has given me and I look forward to supporting my fellow Bonners in the future.
It sounds like a great family! Being around that many kids can get overwhelming so it is great to have that support! We are so glad you are part of the bonner family, you bring so much to the group!
Comments are closed.