New Beginnings… New emotions!

The first week of Duke Engage was filled with nerves and excitement.  Moving into my apartment on Central made me realize that this was it! My work started now!  My first day working at El Centro Hispano was an adventure.  I walked in not knowing what to expect or even where to find my supervisor.  As the day went on, however, I not only started loving every aspect of my job, but all the nerves quickly disappeared.  From the moment I walked in, I was offered my own office desk and was given the tasks I would be responsible for throughout the summer.  Knowing their expectations of me and having a set list of tasks made me feel at ease because I could now work on a plan of action.

During my first week, I mainly focused on planning and organizing a summer reading program, Verano de Lectura, which will help kids improve their reading and comprehension skills.  So far, I have created flyers to promote the program and to recruit volunteers to help, have contacted parents to enroll their kids in the program, and have started to work on the Lesson Plans.  I am happy with the progress I have made so far and I am really looking forward to the following months working here.  I will be involved in a day camp, taking the children around the city to museums and to the zoo, among other adventures, and I will also be researching to create an action plan for setting up citizenship classes at El Centro Hispano.

Work has been great, but getting to spend time with the other Duke Engage Durham participants has made my time here even better.  We have had a lot of fun together this first week, from our adventure to Cuban Revolution after the Bulls game, to cooking together and going to the movies and Zumbathon.  I am especially looking forward to more of our weekend excursions together as a whole group, since there are many people in the program whom I don’t see on a daily basis.  Overall, I am very excited for the upcoming weeks here!!!

– Jania

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