December 4, 2013
Be involved

Being Involved on Campus: My Yellow Brick Road Journey

I didn’t have the worst high school experience, but it did consist a lot of me sitting on the sidelines as I watched in adoration as my peers became involved with one activity after another. “That isn’t me” I thought to myself. “They are born leaders, and that just isn’t me.” I was proud of my peers and enjoyed cheering them on, but I never got involved myself. I didn’t know how and I wasn’t confident that I could.

Breaking out of a Self-Imposed Paradigm

Now, two years after high school, I enrolled at Front Range Community College. I applied for a job at the Information Center on campus and was met with a team of supportive, encouraging individuals. Out of that job, the “that isn’t me” paradigm began to crumble and I decided to get more involved on campus.

Stepping Out as a Student Ambassador

My “that isn’t me” mantra first morphed into “that is me” as a Student Ambassador. Student Ambassadors work as a part of the Outreach and Enrollment team and have the opportunity to both give regular tours of the campus and venture out in the community to share their experience with those who are interested in Front Range and all it has to offer.

Being a Student Ambassador has given me a sense of pride in both my school and in the accomplishments I have had since becoming a Front Range student. I have had the opportunity to grow in my professional skills and become more “in the loop” with how the higher educational process works and what opportunities are offered to college students from tutoring to the Foundation Fellowship that offers scholarships.

Learning to Serve Others

My mantra began to shift again from “that is me” to “it isn’t all about me” within CKI. CKI is short for Collegiate Kiwanis International, an internationally recognized service club. In Spring 2013, a group of student leaders, including Naomi Young, Dylan Khan and Celena Evans-Walk and myself, came to the realization that although Front Range had so many amazing clubs, there wasn’t a club dedicated purely to serving the world we live in. We discovered Collegiate Kiwanis, and believed in their vision of service and servant-leadership. My experience with CKI has helped to expand my world view and has taught me how to better serve those within my community.

Leading through Student Government

If becoming a Student Ambassador gave me courage, and CKI gave me a heart, getting involved with Student Government gave me a brain. (It’s starting to sound like my journey with student life is a little ‘yellow-brick-roadish.’) My mantra finally settled on not only “it’s not all about me” but “I am a leader and within that I will choose to serve others” within Student Government.

Front Range’s Student Government is a group of highly driven and highly influential students. It gives students a voice to speak on behalf of their peers. I have learned how to handle myself not only professionally, but as a leader I’ve had the the chance to see how a leader can stand up for those around them. I am developing a sense of strength I would have never thought possible three years ago.

Getting Involved has Changed Me

My experiences through student life aren’t slowing down anytime soon. Through this involvement I have enhanced my education, networked, made friends, gained confidence, learned professionalism and so much more. The mantra that followed me around evolved from “that isn’t me” to “that is me” to “it’s not all about me” and finally into “I am a leader and within that I will choose to serve others.”

 

The question is, what is your mantra and are you willing to challenge it?

About the author:

Taryn Flack is going into her second year at FRCC-Larimer as a Political Science major. She currently represents the CCCS system to Colorado State Legislation as Legislative Liaison, is President of FRCC Larimer's CKI and is a student ambassador.