Today's been a good day! Finally got the chance to sleep for awhile in the afternoon. I've been sick for quite awhile now and been coughing for a month. But no fear, I've got my antibiotics and will be recovering very very soon.
Today I had a meeting with the director of International Services together with two of my bestest friends in FGCU, Hun from South korea and Lina from Uzbekistan. She wanted to talk with us about public service and to get our opinions regarding public service in the US especially since we come from different countries with varied opinions about serving the community.
We talked about how it was much easier to volunteer here as compared to our home countries because there are many platforms available and many chances for us to come in and serve, and people are generally much more supportive when you say that you want to start a project or work on an initiative.
What I like a lot about FGCU is the fact that service learning is incorporated in our education and that graduating students must complete a minimum of 80 service hours before they can graduate. On top of that, they have to take an environmental colloquium class regardless of their major. It seems like a lot of additional requirements: 80 hours over 4 years constitute to about 10 hours per semester or roughly an hour per week. Not every student has the luxury of having free time, especially here in the US where most students work part time. People see it as a waste of time, and its hard to convince them otherwise. Now it may seem like a burden, but somewhere down the road you'll be thankful that your education wasn't just about reading a bunch of textbooks, and that somewhere out there, someone's life became just a little bit better by your service.
Public service is on my mind a lot these days. Going to the Clinton Global Initiative University conference in Washington D.C. last weekend really inspired me, especially when you meet such wonderful people who have committed so much of their lives to making other people's lives better.
I don't know what my plans are for the future yet, but I know one day I'll dedicate my life to public service. People always say that financial success and living a life of public service rarely go together. We all want to live a good life and money is important that's for sure. But it is not everything. All the money in the world won't be able to buy you happiness.
I read this somewhere:
Money can buy a house, but not a home.
Money can buy a bed, but not sleep.
Money can buy a clock, but not time.
Money can buy a book, but not knowledge.
Money can buy food, but not an appetite.
Money can buy position, but not respect.
Money can buy blood, but not life.
Money can buy insurance, but not safety
Money is not everything.
Because at the end of the day, when you leave this earth, people are not going to care about how much money you made or how successful you are. That's all just for your own benefit. But if your heart was big enough to give back to the community, people will remember you for the legacy that you left behind.
That's my ultimate goal in life - to make the world a better place, even if it's just for a little bit.
By: Nasha Lee (UGRAD 2011/2012)