Throughout college, I’ve struggled to figure out who I am and what I’m passionate about. My resume is all over the place because I’ve done so many unrelated activities (i.e. singing, writing, gymnastics coaching—to name a few), and I often worry that employers won’t know what to make of me. One common theme, however, ties everything in my life together: community. Every meaningful activity I’ve ever done has made an impact on me because of the people involved. Maybe it’s the burnt-out, second-semester senior side of me talking now, but I genuinely feel like I don’t care what I spend the rest of my life doing, as long as I’m working with great people in a supportive environment.
Given my love of community, I wanted to do a project that focused on a specific community I’m involved in: Markley Dining Hall. From the day I started my first shift in October, I could tell there was something really special about the work environment. Unlike most of the other dorms on campus, Markley has never been closed for renovation, allowing several professional dining staff members to stay in Markley for 10+ years. Because the dining hall is small, staff members have an opportunity to bond in ways that might not be possible in South Quad or Mojo. I guess what I’m most curious about is what role community plays in each worker’s motivation to stay—do the workers stay for the atmosphere or just as a way to pay the bills? If the community is important, what is it about the community that is so special to them?
I think my personality will influence what questions I ask during my interviews. I asked one of my best friends to describe me, and the results are below:
As I wrote to my friend, it was weird hearing someone say all those nice things about me. I’ve heard other people call me insightful before, though, so maybe that descriptor is accurate and can help me with my project. I’m hoping as I get to know each worker better, I can start asking insightful questions that allow them to really reflect on the community they’re in.
Let me know what you all think!