Designed For Action: Biology Senior Ready to Continue Work With Youth in the Community
At York College, students aren’t just reading textbooks and listening to lectures. They’re working on community projects, solving real-world problems, and using their education to effect change. In Designed for Action, we meet the students who are making an impact outside of the classroom.
The College’s motto, “servire est vivere” (to serve is to live), is one of the core values Spartans hold near and dear. For Biology/Pre-Med track senior Rachael Huebler, the College’s strong involvement and engagement in the community is a big part of what drew her to York. “I place a high value on community engagement and could identify with York’s commitment to the surrounding community,” she says. That focus is also why she decided to become a Graham Collaborative Innovation Fellow.
A commitment to community
The Graham Collaborative Innovation Fellows is a unique program at the College where students have the opportunity to design an extraordinary educational experience. Fellows achieve high levels of both academic work and co-curricular work as they become the next leaders in their field.
“I knew I did not want to only be a part of my educational community but also the surrounding community,” says Rachael. “I fell in love with and knew I wanted to be an active member in the York community due to the diversity, collaborative efforts, and welcoming atmosphere.”
Being a part of the Fellows program, Rachael says she has had the opportunity to work with community leaders and immerse herself in the culture of York. She has always been drawn to working with youth in the community, and when she found Big Brothers Big Sisters (BBBS), she knew it was the perfect program for her.
“The BBBS program is fantastic in creating a culture that is dedicated to the success of the younger generation,” says Rachael. “Both bigs and littles learn equally through the program, working with each other to solve problems and develop meaningful connections.”
Learning from each other
Rachael is not only a mentor; she learns a great deal from her little sister and about herself as a leader. “My little has taught me the importance of empathy and fearlessness through our interactions and her interactions with her classmates,” she says. “I will carry this lesson of understanding other perspectives with me throughout my professional career and in building connections with others.”
To Rachael, the value of consistent mentorship is unmatched in the successful development of a child. “Mentorship is dynamic, and the skills associated are constantly being developed. I have become a much stronger mentor through this program.” She adds, “It is an honor to play a role in my little sister’s life. I am proud of her progress over the past four years and look forward to all she will achieve in the future.”
Rachael recommends that students get involved in BBBS. “I hope that my experience inspires others to be a big and to carry on this proud tradition of community connection,” she says.
She plans to continue on to medical school after graduating from York College in May 2022 and become a pediatrician. She also intends to continue working with youth and the BBBS.