Students choose volunteering as a path to success


Alana Collopy, Contributing Writer

At Monroe-Woodbury High School, there are many students who choose to volunteer within the community, and there are a number of reasons students choose to do so.

Some students decide to volunteer because they want to receive the Comprehensive Regents diploma when they graduate. In order to receive the Comprehensive Regents diploma, Monroe-Woodbury students must make a commitment to at least 300 hours of community service.

In order to be allowed to begin working towards this diploma, it is required that students submit their plan for this service in advance. In this plan, they must include goals and timetables.

Another reason why Monroe-Woodbury High School students may make the decision to volunteer is that they are a member of the National Honor Society or want to become one.

When you are a member of the National Honor Society you must show good character. One of the National Honor Society requirements for good character is community service. Due to this, there are many Monroe-Woodbury National Honor Society students who have begun to volunteer throughout the community.

Another reason why Monroe-Woodbury High School students may begin to volunteer is that they are a member of either Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts. When you are a member of a Boy Scout or Girl Scout troop you do many different things and one of these things is volunteering. Students who are in these troops have done various different types of volunteer work throughout the community.

When applying to colleges students must compose a resume. Within this resume, students may include different types of volunteer work they have done throughout their high school years. Students do this to hopefully impress colleges and help better their chances of getting accepted.

While some students volunteer throughout the community to help them achieve another goal others do it simply because they want to help out and they enjoy it.

Monroe-Woodbury High School students have multiple opportunities in the community to volunteer. One of the ways that students can do this is to help out at the Monroe Free Library and read books to the children there. Another way in which students may volunteer is at local churches. At churches, they can volunteer to be a teen aid for CCD classes.

National Honor Society students are able to volunteer by tutoring other students after school once a week.

Richard Toledo said that he has been a volunteer for many years now.

“I started volunteering when I was like six; that’s when I joined cub scouts and choir at church. Very minor stuff though,” Toledo said.

Toledo credits his parents for why he began volunteer work.

“Μy parents just kinda helped me get into it, it’s part of a lot of just things I do, it’s part of my hobbies. Also, I enjoy the fulfillment of volunteering; it fills my time in a productive way,” Toledo said. “I’ve volunteered for church camps, run club coach at North Main, many Boy Scout Eagle projects and Monroe clean sweeps, as well as town parades.”

Out of all of the volunteer work Toledo particularly enjoyed parades he walked in for Boy Scouts as well as Eagle projects.

“Parades are always a lot of fun. I see people I know during the route and it’s a day of celebration. Eagle projects are also a lot of fun at times because they’re done with friends I’ve known for years and in between work we get to have to play, too,” said Toledo.

Toledo believes volunteer work is very important.

“Other than simply giving back to the community, volunteering helps develop important character traits needed in life. I’ve learned many skills, a lot about myself, and a lot about life during volunteering”.

Danayda Bermeo is another student who has volunteered throughout the community. Bermeo has been volunteering throughout all of her high school years.

“I first began volunteering when I was 14 years old,” Bermeo said.

Bermeo began volunteering because she wanted to earn the high school’s comprehensive diploma. Bermeo said she believes that volunteering has helped her in her own life.

“It helps me to deal with stressful situations.”

Bermeo also said she believes volunteer work is a great thing to do not only for the people you are helping but for yourself as well.

“It helps the community and gives young adults a sense of having a real job,” she said.

Bernadette Harrington is the mother of senior Caroline Harrington, who has gotten very involved in volunteering in the community.

Caroline has been volunteering for over two years and her mother has seen the impact that volunteering has had on her daughter and is very happy about the way it has shaped her.

“Since my daughter has started volunteering she’s a much happier person, and by volunteering, she found out what she wants to do for a career in life.”

Harrington feels that her daughter’s volunteer work has had an impact. “I see my daughter’s love for little children, and I like the person she has become.””

— Bernadette Harrington


“As a mother, I like the way it has grown her into a mature woman.”

Harrington believes that ever since her daughter began volunteering it has affected her in a positive way.

“She has become more motivated and disciplined in life and she has become more of a patient and understanding person dealing with children,” said Harrington