Service/Capstone Update/Free Write #3

Service/Capstone Update/Free Write #3

October 16, 2022 Uncategorized 25

Please respond to BOTH questions thoroughly.

  1. What is your service site? What is your main role there? What is a professional goal you would like to achieve at your site this semester?
  2. Please reflect on any service experiences or Bonner trainings you have attended over the past month. Describe what you learned, and what you would like to know more about as it pertains to the specific topic.


Please pick one question from above, and replace the 2nd question with a free write. You may write about any topic you’d like as long as it’s not profane or explicit.


25 Responses

  1. Katie Lindsay says:

    I really enjoyed the mental health training Nora facilitated because it helped me learn how to put thoughts on trial by questioning their validity and let unhelpful ones pass. I also was able to identify values and describe them and their importance to me. Being taught an overview about mental health and how it looks different for different people was very interesting to me. I want to learn more about how I can continue working on my own mental health building onto the tools I got from the meeting.

    For my free write, I want to reflect on my progress in time management. The semester is almost over and I am finding myself debating over what needs to be prioritized over what, and gauge my motivation to work on each class and the effort I am willing to put in. I have had ups and downs in being able to maintain my workload and go at a pace that allowed myself a balance of schoolwork, service, personal and social time. I will think on how this balance shifts over the next couple weeks and how to support my health with my education because I know how important both are to me.

  2. Elizabeth Holden says:

    This semester I am working with Girls on the Run. I work on volunteer recruitment as well as retention and also help expand engagement on social media. As this is my first semester with Bonner I am just hoping to learn more about the business side of nonprofits and see how they are run to better understand the organizations that I volunteer with.

    My favorite trainings that we do with Bonner are the trainings that are more than just a presentation. I really enjoy discussions and group work. When learning about important topics it is essential to hear the opinions of everyone in the group. It allows for meaningful and insightful conversations that help connect the topic to our everyday lives. One topic that I think we can discuss as a group in the future is the inequalities regarding the education system. I think that it would be very interesting and useful to learn more about education and how to improve it for everyone.

  3. Taco says:

    For my service site i work alongside my major by being a student nurse. I get assigned a patient and get to work alongside a healthcare team on a surgical floor. Every week i get a new patient and its always interesting to see how i can best help a new individual. As we went along the semester i got to administer medicine and observe some pretty cool procedures. In the beginning of the year the student nurses weren’t allowed to do to much and now we have our own patients and do most of their care.

  4. Kayla McKay says:

    My service site is being a Program Associate for the Bonner Program. My main role in the ACE office is to make sure that I am holding students accountable for their commitment to the program. One professional goal I have is to make the BLT role in Bonner more of a committee leadership check-in team that holds more responsibility in the program. This will allow more peer or peer accountability as well as check-ins to make sure each Bonner is doing okay through the semester and gives them extra support.

    One training that really stood out to me was the Mental Health training that Nora did and it was amazing. I learned more ways to manage stress through mindful activities that I have incorporated in my day-today life.

  5. Chandler Edbauer says:

    What is your service site? My capstone Project, which is researching the criteria for selected and rejected social innovation projects. What is your main role there? Primary Researcher. What is a professional goal you would like to achieve at your site this semester? I would like have a published research paper. I hope to attend at least one conference with Dr. Salmon to present my research.
    Please reflect on any service experiences or Bonner trainings you have attended over the past month. Describe what you learned, and what you would like to know more about as it pertains to the specific topic.
    I attended the service day at the Domestic Violence Street Fair. I learned about the importance of awareness and I would like to know more about how I can help spread information.

  6. Mara Golden says:

    My service site is Albany Med. My main role is a Case Worker providing direct needs and assessments on patients and their families. A professional goal I wanted to achieve was confidence building. My supervisor ended up leaving Albany Med and I was trained for a little while before I was left to work on my own. My service experience has been eye opening in many ways. I learn new things every day and find a new reason to love social work. I recently lost my first baby, which was difficult and it was hard to see a life cut so short. Although it was sad and tough, I am glad I didn’t have to go through it alone. The team I have at work is absolutely amazing and I wouldn’t want it any other way.

  7. Kimberly Lopez says:

    My service site for this semester is The Connect Center for Youth and my main role there is that I am their Market Coordinator. Starting this semester I will be focusing more on social media and newsletters for the Connect Center. My biggest goal is for The Connect Center to be more active and represented in all the social media outlets.

    This past Monday I attended the “Women in Media” panel and I had a great time hearing the stories of amazing media and how they were able to carve their way in the media. Attending their panel made me realize that no matter how out of reach your dreams seem you should always chase them. A key takeaway was that your dreams are worth fighting for and you should always fight for them even if the odds seem against you.

  8. Liz MacMurray says:

    For this semester, I am a program associate and I am in charge of recruitment. For this week, I planned out an information session tabling event for students to come and learn more about the Bonner Program! This is a big goal of mine that I had and that was to create more on-campus events to have more students informed about the opportunities ACE can provide. Interviews for some new students will start soon which is also exciting!

    On Saturday the 12th, I and some other Bonner students were able to go to the Siena admissions day. At this event, we get a chance to talk to students passionate about community service and tell them about the opportunities ACE can provide. I had a lot of interesting conversations and I am happy to represent a program that provides a chance to be a community engaged in College.

  9. Anum Tehseen says:

    Please reflect on any service experiences or Bonner training you have attended over the past month. Describe what you learned, and what you would like to know more about as it pertains to the specific topic.

    The block party at Unity House was my favorite Bonner event this year. It was set up as a social event where we got to meet a lot of people and I learned a lot about the services and security provided by The Unity House. It was incredible to see nonprofits come together to raise awareness and celebrate their accomplishments thus far. Having interacted with people over pumpkin painting made me realize how simple it is to strike up a conversation with someone, and fortunately I was also able to display my amazing pumpkin painting skills.

    Free Write:

    I’m currently working with a few Next members on a service site and I have learned a lot from them. The work we do is very fun and has motivated me in many ways. Over the span of this semester I’ve come to realize a weakness that I would love to overcome as it prevents me from doing my best. I’ve noticed my lack of leadership in terms of communication and confidence. I would love to have more opportunities in Bonner that will put me “on the spot” and require me to step further outside of my comfort zone. Presenting in front of the Bonner class for a meeting was a great start/experience.

  10. Isabella Ferragine says:

    1) My service site is at the Boys and Girls Club in Troy. My main role is assisting with the children’s after-school program. Normally, this includes aiding in games and helping them with homework. My professional goal is to be able to implement the workshops that I have been making for the kids! These workshops are based on communication and storytelling.

    2) Free write: This past month has been an extremely difficult one for me however, everyone from ace has been super helpful and caring during this time. I really appreciate the little community that we have and I just wanted to say thank you for that! Everyone has been doing outstanding work and I know that many of us have been struggling as college is hard but remembering that we are all here to support each other is really important!

    Keep going, everyone!

  11. Brianna Rodriguez says:

    1. While I currently don’t attend Bonner meetings on Wednesday nights, I recently attended the “Women of Color in Media” talk on November 14th to make up for our canceled service day last Saturday. I thought this talk was incredibly insightful about the experiences that women of color go through working in media and how their intersectional identities influence the stories they tell. Many of the stories they tell through investigative journalism, newscasting, and comedy address the underrepresented stories of racism, sexism, and social justice that they often have to fight to get on the air. One of the topics that resonated with me from speaker Eneida Del Valle that I want to learn more about is the Latino Data Gap. This data gap is about the disturbing lack of data on Latinos in the criminal justice system due to Latinos being recognized as an ethnicity and not a race. This causes them to be counted as either black or white, prohibiting the ethnic disparities in the criminal justice system from being accurately tracked.

    2. Free Write: These past few weeks are literally flying by and it’s kind of crazy. Before we know it, it’ll be winter break and then we’ll be in the Spring semester (which I feel will also go by really fast!). This is making me feel a little existential and like I have no time to figure out what I need to do for my future, but I’ll most likely ignore this until I can’t anymore. Which is fine by me. I’m grateful and happy that I have people in my life that make me feel loved and supported so, in the end, everything will be fine. There’s no use in me stressing about it because one way or another, I’ll figure everything out and I still have so much life to live after college that I can look back on as an old person and be like “lol that was sweet :).”

  12. Abeer Jafri says:

    One training I attended this past month that was really helpful was the design clinic for our capstone projects. I learned so much from the faculty mentors who were present, and received great insight about how I can work to improve my project. It was also nice to hear about fellow Bonners’ capstones. Specifically, one thing I learned about was how important communication is when working with community partners, especially on a project of this scale. I would like to learn more about how I can improve my communication skills with partners, since I will be dealing with multiple once we start presenting at the hospital.

    I can’t believe this is my last semester at Siena! It has been a great time, and I thank Bonner for being a constant during the good and the bad. I am excited to finish up these next few weeks, and to see what the future holds, as scary as that may be.

  13. Abeer Jafri says:

    1. Please reflect on any service experiences or Bonner trainings you have attended over the past month. Describe what you learned, and what you would like to know more about as it pertains to the specific topic.

    One training I attended this past month that was really helpful was the design clinic for our capstone projects. I learned so much from the faculty mentors who were present, and received great insight about how I can work to improve my project. It was also nice to hear about fellow Bonners’ capstones. Specifically, one thing I learned about was how important communication is when working with community partners, especially on a project of this scale. I would like to learn more about how I can improve my communication skills with partners, since I will be dealing with multiple once we start presenting at the hospital.

    2. Free Write
    I can’t believe this is my last semester at Siena! It has been a great time, and I thank Bonner for being a constant during the good and the bad. I am excited to finish up these next few weeks, and to see what the future holds, as scary as that may be.

  14. Ava Bibisi says:

    The service site that I am working with is the Spina Bifida Association of New York State. My main role this semester has been to promote and fundraise for their annual gala which is taking place this weekend. I have created grant proposals and created community calendars, as well as, create promotional videos for their event. Along with serving with SBANYS, I have also begun my capstone project. I’m hoping to research easily accessible and low-cost oral health implementations for children to reduce their risks of oral disease. I haven’t gotten too far in my work, however, one of my goals by the end of the semester is to have a concise and solidified research question.

    Free Write: I can’t believe that this semester is almost over. To think that we only have 3 or so weeks left of classes is crazy! I’m super excited about my service site’s gala this weekend. It is always so nice to get to see my supervisor and the other awesome people that work in the office since I do service virtually. It is also a really awesome feeling to get to participate in an event at my site and see all the hard work that everyone has devoted their time to and see the event come together.

  15. Amanda says:

    1. My service site is the Spina Bifida Association of New York State and also my social work internship site is Sunnyview Rehabilitation Center. My role at SBANYS is to assist my director Julia with work relating to the Dare to Dream gala. My role at Sunnyview is to observe my social work supervisor as well as complete some paperwork and work with clients myself. A professional goal I have for Sunnyview view is to complete a patient admission by myself by the end of the semester.
    2. One service experience I had this past month was working at the study abroad table at the open house answering students’ and families’ questions about the experience. I was really happy to help at this table because this experience was so incredible for me last semester so getting to help in easing others’ anxieties about it and being able to make them excited about the possibility of studying abroad was a great experience.

  16. Isabella says:

    I am working at the Boys and Girls Club in Troy and I aid the kids in homework and activity assistance. A professional goal I have would be time management. Currently I have three jobs and I am tying to balance them all at once. I need to plan out my week and manage my time accordingly with the kids from the BGC. The Bonner training that influenced me the most was the mental health service. I realized that our bodies take a huge mental strain and we need to take better care of it. I know how to make a negative situation positive and reflect on the good things in life.

  17. Giavanna Pitagno says:

    I am working on a consumer survey for the Food Pantries for the Capital District. Upon IRB approval, I will be conducting phone surveys, and hopefully some in person surveys next semester. This project will eventually become my capstone senior year. I will be running a statistical analysis on the data we collect for the surveys. I am really excited to start collecting the data! This eventually being my capstone is a special source of motivation for service!

    Free Write: I just had a meeting for my J-Term in Italy and it’s making me so excited to go! I have never really had the opportunity to travel and I am so eager to be able to do this by myself (and obviously the other students going). I’m so excited to be living in a host family too! I really want to learn to cook with them, and learn more traditional Italian recipes and try new foods! I’m a bit sad because I will be taking Exam P the week after I come back from Italy- so I have to prepare while I’m there. But I hope to turn that into a positive and challenge myself to use it as a way to explore different cafe’s and restaurants alone while I’m there.

  18. Asavari Gowda says:

    My service sites are Free-food fridge and capital city rescue mission’s free clinic. At free food fridge, I pack at least 100 meals a week with my partner and at the clinic, I am a medical assistant (I do intakes, fill prescriptions, and help around the clinic). From free food fridge, I am learning organizational skills and the basics of how a college works with nonprofits. At the clinic, I am learning a lot about the environment of clinical care and healthcare inequity for uninsured/undocumented individuals.

    My favorite Bonner event from this past month was when the block party at Unity House. I thought it was a a very neat way for different mutual aid groups and nonprofits to come together to raise awareness, build connections, and celebrate all that they have accomplished so far. I also noticed that many attendees who came in groups were clients at Unity House/other nonprofits and they felt a sense of community by attending events like the block party. I hope we get to go to more of these in the future.

  19. Hannah Lawlor says:

    The most impactful training I have experienced in the past month has been by Nora. Nora presented a presentation on the topic of Mental Health. When I think of mental health I think of people expressing thier needs and finding ways to cope. The most interesting part was that Nora found a way to put our thoughts on trial. I have never thought of the concept of putting my “thoughts on trial”. Unexpectedly, this process allowed me to really think about my emotions up front. Seeing both sides to my emotions helping me rationalized what exactly was going on. I think the training was beneficial and outside of the box at some points.

    Free response: As I mentioned above I have putting my emotions to the test and thinking hard about what has come of my college experience thus far. Adjusting to college is extremely hard, especially when the burden doesn’t feel like it is lifting after 2 months. Being go, go, go, everyday is a hard thing to keep up with. At the same time I feel as though I have found my voice through this journey. I have been having difficulties with the nursing program and as hard as it is I have been speaking up and expressing my concerns. While I don’t think my voice is getting very far, I think it is important to practice advocation and understand that all our journeys are different. While the journey maybe difficult now it will only help us learn for the future.

    I hope everyone enjoys the weekend!

  20. Samantha Lunt says:

    One of my service sites this semester is PA and I am currently working on trainings. I have enjoyed working in this area and getting to work with Mairead to plan out the trainings. I have learned a new set of skills in planning and needing to look into the future to plan trainings. In way this has challenged me and I have enjoyed being able to work on skills like communication and planning. My other service site is the Connect Center where I am doing my capstone project. Something that I just accomplished with Dr. Kelly is our IRB Application was approved! Finishing the IRB and it being approved was a big step because now we can plan for our focus groups to take place at the Connect Center. Capstone has felt like a rollercoaster and it is exciting to see things getting started and it is helping me to stay focused.

    Free write: I can’t believe that this semester is already almost over. I was looking at the training calendar this week and just realized how we only have a few more Wednesday night meetings left for the semester. I know this is so cheesy but I have found that it is also so true, how the days are long but the weeks go by so quickly. Right now I think that I am trying to find a balance of getting work done and doing well, but also enjoying my last year here. It is a balance that can be hard to find, but it is also an important one!

  21. Mya Pedersen says:

    My service site this semester is at the Connect Center. At my site I have been mainly focusing on recruiting volunteers for our backpack program and retaining the volunteers we already have. I have stepped out of my comfort zone greatly by doing things like reaching out to businesses and individuals regarding our programs and the things we have to offer here at the center. I am currently working on updating all of our volunteer listings to be more up to date and consistent. Throughout the rest of the semester and going into the next, I want to continue to step even farther out of my comfort zone and really see progress on our backpack program.

    At the Center I have felt as though my work has been pretty stagnant, I have been reaching out to different businesses and leaders within different organizations in regards to our backpack program and have been waiting for responses for a few weeks now. I am beginning to feel a bit impatient and am excited to hear back and really get my work at the Connect center rolling. I want to prove to the other Bonners at my site and the others at my site that the work I am doing Is paying off and I am actually recruiting volunteers. I am excited to see where I can take this program, and the Connect Center as a whole throughout the rest of the year.

  22. Nora Diede says:

    My service site is a research project for the Food Pantries of the Capital District. They are still going through the IRB process, yet I am preparing to give surveys through the phone to clients of the pantries. These will be focused on the experience for the consumer to better the process, in a way that goes in line with the wishes of the consumers. I am also working on the ACE social media and marketing committee. This includes working on the ACE Instagram, and taking pictures during Bonner events. I really wanted to focus on organization and communication this semester. This is definitely going to be worked on once the IRB approves the survey, and I am able to conduct these surveys. However, I am currently working on organization in terms of social media and marketing, and finding posts and relevant content.
    Free write: I went to the Conversation About Racism with Dr. Robert Livingston. It was a super interesting conversation, and Dr. Livingston was super engaging. He is a professor at Harvard, and explained many different facets of racism within our society. He works on racism within the workplace, and addresses the issue of diversity to ensure that more diversity is presented in the workplace. He goes to different work places and discusses the need for diversity, and works with them to incorporate it. He also touched on the differences between equity and equality, which I think should be incorporated into a Bonner training, as it is important to consider when in our service sites. He gave a free book to all the participants, and I look forward to reading it when homework calms down!

  23. Abby James-Vickery says:

    1) My site is the Connect Center for Youth in Cohoes and my goal right now is to create more structure on the staff side of things, like creating a more consistent schedule. I also plan to do check ins with the people at the Connect Center to make sure that everyone is doing okay and that we are being effective in our work.

    2) Free Write: I just wanted to touch on how appreciative I am for everyone. Everyone was so supportive of my training and I appreciate all of the feedback that I have gotten. I am very passionate about the foster care system and it plays such a huge role in my life! I really enjoyed doing this training and I am very thankful that everyone participated and was so involved.

    Have a beautiful day everyone 🙂

  24. Stephanie Da Fonseca says:

    My service site this semester is my capstone project. I am completing an auto-ethnography about being second generation American and how it affects your sense of self and belonging. A goal I have for this semester is to have all my research and thoughts organized so that I can complete and write my capstone next semester.

    One of the most interesting and powerful trainings I have been to this semester is the training we had on the foster care system. It was a topic I was not very knowledgeable about and our facilitator Abby, did an amazing job in explaining and guiding us through this topic. We got to learn about the foster care to prison pipeline, we got to see videos of adults who spent their life in the foster care system, and we got to hear statements from children who were actually in the system but luckily got out. I would love to do more trainings about it especially in the political climate we are in, where politicians are trying to fully remove women’s right to choose AND eliminate birth control availability. This will flood the system with even more children of parents who were not ready to be parents.

  25. Rachel+Gifford says:

    1)My service site this year is Food Pantries for the Capital District. My main role is as a network coordinator for their online site Oasis. I am currently working on a larger project surrounding transferring delivery data to be delivered by the Food Pantries. This allows for their data to be more up-to-date so that they can better identify the areas of need within the Capital District. I am almost done with this project and I’m hoping to finish it next week and start a new project by the end of the week. My goal for the semester was to do two projects so I’m still on track. In terms of capstone, Kayla and I met with our advisor Dr. Adams!!!! Next, we hope to meet with SICM as a community partner and register for the capstone class next semester!

    2) Free Write: Brianna and I attended Bonner Congress two weekends ago in Kentucky. We really loved the experience! My favorite part was interacting with students from different Bonner programs and learning how their program works. We also attended many different trainings from BLT to social identity trainings. My favorite training was motivational interviewing where we worked in groups to practice asking questions and helping encourage someone to make a change. With this training, we did a lot of self-reflection and we learned how to be assertive with empathy. Some of the other fun things we did was a talent show, learning about Kentucky’s history, and we visited the Muhammed Ali Cultural Center. I never learned about Muhammed Ali before visiting the center and it was extremely interesting to learn about his work in Civil Rights through the use of poetry, music, protest, and boxing. I really had an amazing time and if anyone wants to learn more about Brianna and I’s experience we would always love to talk about it!!

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