Hi Everyone! I serve in Lansing as an AmeriCorps VISTA Leader for the MNA Civic Engagement Team. This is my fourth year in an AmeriCorps Program. My first two VISTA assignments were in Mobile, AL serving at Volunteer Mobile and then at the Bay Area Food Bank. Last year, I served as an AmeriCorps State/National member in Greenville, SC at the United Way of Greenville. At the end of last year, I felt like it was high time to step up to the plate and be a VISTA Leader. I am so glad I made that decision and so glad to have joined MNA’s active pursuit of nonprofit capacity building.
A lot of my time is spent supporting VISTA members. I use our blogs, webinars, and Weekly Updates to answer questions, pass on resources, and remind folks of reporting due dates. In terms of national service, I participate in Days of Service like the MNA Service Day at Peckham, the AmeriCorps VISTA service project at a community garden as well as review grant applications, network with local AmeriCorps alumni, and update VISTA Assignment Descriptions. Fortunately, I don’t have to do this all alone or all at once. I have my co-leader, Lee Xiong for support throughout the year.
Another important aspect of my job is beginning now: the recruitment process has started! I have updated our marketing materials for the program, helped set up a recruitment timeline, and registered for career/job fairs around the state. Lee and I started at Alma College, went next to Michigan State University and then to Job Pursuit in Lansing. We still have a few more in March. I really enjoy this aspect of my job. It is fun to tell the students about the AmeriCorps VISTA program and what it can mean to them. This is the first step in our search for candidates in the spring. Lee and I will be interviewing, working with site supervisors, and keeping all the necessary paperwork in order with hopes of filling our VISTA slots for the 2015-16 term. I hope that our VISTA members will be encouraging their friends and acquaintances to join in the fight against poverty.
Each blog post was written by one of our VISTAs!