Colleen Swanhart ’22
International Outreach and Service Trip Participant
What involvement did/do you have with MOVE? What program did/do you volunteer with and/or lead? What years?
I’ve been a mentor with International Outreach since the beginning of my sophomore year, where I have the opportunity to build meaningful relationships with refugee children in the Winooski area. I’m also an employee in the MOVE office and love seeing the hard work and dedication that goes into making each program so special and meaningful for everyone involved! During the spring of my freshman year, I attended a service trip to Baltimore, Maryland, where I had the opportunity to meet so many amazing people and learn about issues such as homelessness and poverty in the area.
What’s your MOVE story?
When I first started volunteering with MOVE, I saw it as an opportunity to get more involved on campus. This attitude quickly changed once I became more involved with the program and saw how truly special it is. To see the efforts of so many people coming together through service is a truly special thing, and has forever changed my view of volunteerism.
In what ways did/does MOVE impact you?
Working with MOVE and participating in different volunteer programs has given me an entirely new perspective on the people around me. I’ve come to realize the importance of engaging in difficult and uncomfortable conversations, while also recognizing when to listen and learn. MOVE has also shown me the value of advocating for the most vulnerable and marginalized populations, both on our campus and in our wider community. I wholeheartedly believe that MOVE has made me a more patient, compassionate, and insightful human being.
Anything else you would like to add?
I feel so grateful to have the opportunity to be part of such an impactful group that has left its mark on our greater community. To have the chance to interact with different groups of people has made my time here at SMC that much more special!