Name: Hanna Cho
Hometown: Woodbridge, CT
School/Major: University of Connecticut/ Communications
1. How did you hear about City Year?
I heard about City Year through the many people I met and talked to while volunteering as Team Leader for another AmeriCorps program called Jumpstart. I started to hear the names of a lot of other AmeriCorps programs, one of which was City Year.
2. How do you think this year will connect with your long-term goals or career path?
After taking a sociology class on inequality, I became more aware of the disparity in education between children born into wealthy families and those born into low-income families. I also became aware of the long-term effects as a result of the disparity; children in low-income families are more likely to not do well in school and therefore limit their future choices. I became so angry because these children had no control over which family they were born into. That’s when I chose the path to become a teacher, in an effort to help those in need. I think that City Year will help me have a realistic experience to confirm what I want to do in the future, while taking me one step closer to fulfilling that dream.
3. What are you most excited about for your corps year?
I am most excited to meet the children and my team! I can’t wait to make unforgettable memories with them!
4. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten that you’re going to keep with you for the next year?
“In the end, you’re doing it for the kids. That’s all that matters.” While volunteering through Jumpstart, there were definitely times when I wished I could just go back to my dorm room and do nothing. About halfway through the year, I started to get burned out. The excitement I felt in the beginning was gone. I was just tired and stressed out, trying to manage 12-15 hours of volunteerism a week, while simultaneously be a college student. During times like these, I always thought of the bigger picture: the kids. That always helped me to motivate myself and do my best for the kids because after all, I’m in it for the kids.
5. I can #makebetterhappen by making my students realize that they are important to me.
Nothing feels better than to know that there are people out there who care for you. And that’s exactly what I want my students to know—that I care for them!