Scholarship Review

Morgan Boyd

Serra Catholic High School
Senior? Yes
Elite top 100? Yes
Letters of recommendation: Letter of Recommendation 1, Letter of Recommendation 2


What does volunteering mean to me? If you had asked me this question six years ago, when I was told that I had to volunteer as part of my school requirement, I would have answered this question so differently than I would today. Then, I would have said that volunteering was either helping out at a soup kitchen or donating goods to a homeless shelter. I had no idea of where to even look for volunteer opportunities. Never would I have imaged that volunteering is an activity that not only gives back to others, but also empowers each of us to become agents of change- through volunteering I saw a change in myself and in those I helped.

Now that I am a senior in high school, my “list” if you will, of past volunteer activities has expanded immensely and includes a rather heterogeneous collection of activities. Over the years, I have discovered that volunteering can include just about anything, as long as you are giving time and thought to others. I have volunteered for large and small groups, at school and at home, and in locations within my community as well as far from where I live. One of my favorite organizations that I am a proud member of is Best Buddies, a program whose mission is to facilitate friendships between those with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their typical peers. Being a part of this group has allowed me to surround myself with many new smiles and make memories that I will never forget.

I volunteer not because I’m trying to check a service box on my to-do list, but because I personally want to give back to others. After taking time to reflect, I realized that volunteers themselves have contributed greatly to the quality of my life: from the older student volunteers who have helped my cheerleading squad to the parents who have donated their time and services at my school events. These small acts, that may appear trivial to some, have all positively affected my life. Beyond thanking these people for what they have done for me, I have been inspired by their action and want to pay it forward by helping others. That is one reason why I decided to volunteer at cheer camps at the Western Pennsylvania School for the Deaf. I appreciated the help I received at cheer camp in the past, and I wanted to reciprocate and help other students as well.

I volunteer as a way of giving thanks to what others have done for me- after all, a little gratitude goes a long way. I volunteer to make sure others are given the assistance that they deserve- because good service is both a privilege and a right. I volunteer because I can meet other people- and learn from their experiences, too. Volunteerism is the ultimate method to show respect to others and it is something that I will continue in the future with great pride.