Dear Freshmen, Live Different.



Living Different
College/University ………………..the fun years
Many do not realize that the choices you make during your  college/university years will define who we are to become.
No, I am not talking about what courses you choose to study, what classes you choose to attend or skip …..I’m not talking about whether you got a student loan, or worked through the summer and saved money to help your parents pay for university, I’m not even talking about your choices to drink, smoke, or go out to bars on the weekends.  I am talking about your choice to get involved !
Years ago some friends of mine made a choice to get involved. They chose to volunteer their time to help others. They signed up with different groups in university that were helping the under privileged children in the city where they were attending school. They signed up to work at homeless shelters on the weekends and helped out with raising funds to help the elderly . My friends chose to not only attend university and receive a better education, they chose to help make the world they lived in a little better.
From those experiences at university there came a dream ……..a dream to make a larger part of the world better. Their dream included university aged students and their need and want for adventure.  Why not present university students with an opportunity to spend a part of their summer in another country, learning about a new culture, experiencing  joy, heartbreak and a new understanding of how people survive in third world countries?  My friends gave these students a chance to help build new homes, schools and medical centers in an underdeveloped country, they gave them a chance to make a difference in someone’s life !  They did not involve religion, they simply chose humanitarian…….. they chose  to make their dream about shaping “heroes” out of everyday university students.  Heroes come in many shapes and forms.  Heroes are people who choose to care about others more than themselves. 
Just this year, I sat and read page after page of comments made by “heroes” about their experiences and how it had changed their lives. How, many of them had made lifelong friends in a different country, lifelong friends with people they had joined on this adventure.  I read about how many of them returned year after year until university was done, worked for a few years and once again felt the need to go help.
Krissie, completed her nursing degree, has a full time job in a hospital  but chooses to spend her holidays in the Dominican Republic working with our  friend a medical doctor who volunteers selflessly to help others on a daily bases. Her “fun” is helping others. The joy I see on her face when I look at the pictures she posts makes me smile.  She chose years ago to become a hero, to make a choice to get involved…not just to attend university and get a better education,  get a good job,  make money, buy a house, a car ….more money to buy more things………..She chose to make a difference !!! 
Krissie is just one of many young people  I personally know that have made the choice to get involved  and I encourage you to consider this when you start university this year!
What choice will you make? 
GET involved …choose to live different !!!
By Marlene- Member of the Working Force

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