What has been your favorite service project so far? What project(s) would you like to pursue in the future?
“It’s hard to say. All the projects within the club hold a special place because it was always a main goal for all the members in the club to really be action takers and difference makers, especially if we wanted to make change happen with the many social issues in our community and globally. But if I had to pick one project, it would be Project Dignity, where we created reusable menstruation kits for teenage Kenyan girls.
“A project that I would like to work on in the future would be to provide tutoring services for students whose families have been negatively impacted due to the pandemic. I shared this project with the new president of my club before I left for college. The new president will begin working with the principal from one of the local urban schools in the Greensboro area to develop a tutoring plan where members of the club will provide additional tutoring lessons to the students remotely. I was overwhelmed by the excitement that the new leadership in the club had for this project. They really understood that the education of kids in urban cities is at a greater risk, especially because homework help may not be readily available for families whose parents are essential workers or for those families where the grandparents are left to teach complex subjects. I still serve as a mentor and adviser to my club—that is the sustainable part of the Gold Award project—so I still get to witness the great work done.”
You are now a college freshman! What is the most exciting part about starting your college career?
“I am excited about making new friends, exploring campus leadership opportunities, attending basketball games (hopefully), immersing myself in chemistry and anatomy, and just trying to make the most of my freshmen experience as a UNC Charlotte 49er on a college campus during a pandemic. Although I was admitted to more than 13 colleges and universities, I knew UNC Charlotte was home for me. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte provides so many opportunities, from leadership opportunities to research programs. I started college early by participating in a summer program called the University Transitions Opportunity Program. The mentorship and bond created from my cohort laid the foundation for a great freshman experience both academically and socially. This opportunity led to my being invited to serve as the only freshman on its advisory board.
A project that I would like to work on in the future would be to provide tutoring services for students whose families have been negatively impacted due to the pandemic. I shared this project [with my club] before I left for college, and I was overwhelmed by the excitement that the new leadership had for it.
- Kennedy Jeffers
“I am also a nursing major, with plans to become a pediatric nurse practitioner and later earn my doctorate in nursing practice. Being a former pre-med major, I’m excited about elevating the field of nursing, because the general perception of a nurse appears to be very limited; many fail to realize the clinical care, leadership responsibility, vast specialties and numerous job opportunities within the nursing field. Often, nursing opportunities match those of a medical doctor, and you have fewer years of school (plus less student debt) and you still get to make a difference in someone’s life.”
This has been a trying year, to put it plainly. How have you been finding or seeking joy?
“I absolutely love singing—not professionally, of course. You know, the kind of singing when it’s OK to sing out loud and off key while no one is watching. I love all kinds of music, and musicals are my absolute favorite. Sometimes I literally feel like I can defy gravity like Elphaba in Wicked or be the new girl in town like Tracy Turnblad in Hairspray. But right now, I am listening to ’70s and ’80s classic rock from groups like Ambrosia and Huey Lewis and the News. I also love to watch organization videos, especially the videos from my favorite YouTuber, Melissa Lucy. I think I have watched every one of her videos like four times, and I have used every organization tip from her videos since my junior year in high school. To-do lists are my life! And oh yeah, bingeing on a couple episodes of The Office on Netflix makes everything right with the world.”