An Everyday Hero

The University values an educational environment that provides all members of the campus community with opportunities to grow and develop intellectually, personally, culturally and socially. In order to give us a more complete picture of you as an individual, please tell us about the particular life experiences, perspectives, talents, commitments and/or interests you will bring to our campus. In other words, how will your presence enrich our community?

Anne Frank once said, “How wonderful is it that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.” Many people do not realize the impact the smallest good deeds can have on the human race. Some may even give up trying to make a difference, simply because they don’t see the effects of their actions. But there are some people in this world who don’t waste time contemplating if they actually are making a difference, they just take action immediately. My grandma is one of those people, and she has truly inspired me to become someone she is proud to call “granddaughter”.When someone has eight children to take care of, it’s hard to find time to take care of their own personal needs. My grandma sacrificed a lot over the years to give only the best to her children. Every summer, she took the family to stay at their cabin up north, in an effort to keep the family together. Now that her children have grown up, my grandma still keeps everyone close by hosting a dinner at her house every Christmas. By doing this, she takes the stress off the other family members and takes the burden of the holidays upon herself. She even finds a way to help out any family members who are in trouble. Whether they need money, guidance, or just a little love, my grandma is always there for those who need her. Through her selfless devotion to her friends and most importantly, family, my grandma has inspired me to give back to my community as much as I can. I have dedicated much of my time over the years to various service activities. One of my most rewarding experiences was my numerous trips to feed the less fortunate at a soup kitchen in Milwaukee. The smiles on the faces of those I helped have lingered in my mind for much longer than the moments I spent there with them. Other memories that stick out in my mind are raising money for Relay for Life and walking through the night despite rain and cold. The candles flickering along the sides of the track gave me the strength to keep walking for those who had not given up throughout their fight with cancer.Another way my grandma helps out the family is by babysitting for her grandchildren when their parents are away. It is so hard for young parents to balance work and family life, let alone pay for daycare. Simply by taking a few hours of her time to watch their children, my grandma saves them a lot of money and stress. Also, my grandma loves to show her support for her grandchildren whenever a major event happens in their lives. Whether it is an award ceremony or a graduation, my grandma is always there to show her love. Her care for younger children has instilled in me the importance of family and the values of kindness and unconditional love. I spent many fantastic years babysitting for kids in my neighborhood, and learned responsibility as well as humility. It was through these small friends of mine that I relearned the importance of seeing the world through a child’s eyes. Young kids don’t judge others for not wearing the right clothes or put on a facade to impress someone else. Kids see the world purely and I strive to do this in my own life every day.Another way my grandma shows her love is through her church, since religion is very important to her. She is part of the hospitality committee, where she helps the church with whatever is needed. On Sundays, you can find her cheerfully greeting everyone who comes through the church’s doors. She has also been known to help cater for funerals and to wash certain garments used in the mass. One of my grandma’s favorite things to do is to have breakfast with the older ladies after church. Some of them are in their seventies, but others are much older and aren’t in the best of health. But every weekend my grandma visits with them, and drives the ones who need a ride to the restaurant. Whenever I hear my grandma talk about those ladies, I can tell just how much love she has for them. Having lunch with her friends may be only a simple act of kindness, but I know my grandma’s love has made a difference in their lives.My grandma’s various ways of showing her love to those around her has taught me to treat everyone I meet with compassion. Her optimism and determination to succeed in life are qualities I have embraced when making my own choices. From simply spending a few hours donating blood to the week I taught bible school to kids at my church, I try to make a difference in my community. Though my efforts may not seem big to some, I feel that every little bit helps somehow. Because of her belief in me, I have excelled at many of the tasks I have pursued. Though she is proud of my achievement of straight A’s throughout high school, what she is most proud of is my development of character. When it comes down to it, schooling is important, but it is what you do with the skills you learn that makes a difference. And all I hope for is to be remembered simply as someone who cared for those who needed it.

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