Outreach for Community

Outreach for Community

Thao Trinh, CIS alumni, first Year Student, University of Toronto

Hey there CISS and Happy New Year!

I am back again on another “episode” of the University life away from my beloved home. First and foremost however, I would like to send the biggest CONGRATULATION to our community in making it to the IB World School. I knew we could do it, make sure you send your gratitude to our wonderful leadership team!

On that note I am here today to talk about a topic that I have recently taken a liking to: Outreach and Volunteering Opportunities. As you know, our school has always been involved in every way with helping and getting involved with our community. From GINS, to the Terry Fox Run to other various fundraising events we do. It’s always been a signature for us to give back to the people around us; especially those who do not have as many opportunities to achieve a comfortable lifestyle.

Being in university allows me to realize that outreaching does not only help your community but it also helps you as well. I am not generalizing here, but based on what I see and study from human nature, we are more fired up in not only giving but also receiving; and there is absolutely no problem with that. I volunteer and help the community because I want people to have the same opportunities as me in achieving a comfortable lifestyle, but it also gives me something greater in return: knowledge, connections, understanding and skill enhancement. These things are to be treated like gold; trust me on this.

Thao Trinh (standing) as volunteer journalist for UTMUN, an assembly discussing about social and political issues around the world with the participant of various high schools in Toronto

When you write your volunteer opportunities and leadership opportunities on your resume or university applications, they will value those more than the grades you received. I am living proof. I can tell you that I might not be the smartest girl in my program or have the best grades, but I can assure you that very few people have had the opportunity I have had, to be a student leader of two clubs, build bridges for a community to help them get to school, and help organize volunteer events for the school. My parents have always told me, “Anyone can get an A, but do they have the efforts, experiences and ambitions? Because that is how you draw the line between a leader and someone who is good at studying”. I am not saying to drop studying and go volunteer, however, so don’t you go and quote me on this! What I am saying is study as hard as you can, but don’t let opportunities of outreaching and doing something for the community pass you by.

Take action and be the change! Cliché but it’s the truth. You will hear this for the rest of your life by the way.

Until next time!

Thao Trinh  - First Year Student, University of Toronto