December VISTA Spotlight
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Sharonda Simmons, a current VISTA who serves as the Coordinator for National Louis University’s Veteran’s Department. She recently helped with her organization’s Veteran’s Week and I also got to see what else she’s been up to as her service year has progressed.
Veteran’s Week is a week that acknowledges this country’s veterans, both living and dead. Agencies and community partners help salute veterans by participating in week-long activities such as Snack and Write and the week also gives civilians a chance to thank veterans for their service. During that week, Sharonda had the pleasure of helping to make sure each event ran smoothly. “I got to sing the national anthem at the closing event of the week, which was at a vigil for deceased veterans. That was really nice,” she said. When it came to what she thought of the week, Sharonda said, “I enjoyed planning it and I also liked being a part of the program for this year.”
Outside of her VISTA service year, Sharonda loves to give back and help others. She says that she likes to help the homeless by making care packages for them. She likes to make care packages for cancer patients, which has a personal meaning to her as her mother is a cancer survivor. She also enjoys singing and her favorite genres to sing are R&B, gospel, and country. She also helps with annual parades put on for foster families in her home state of Tennessee.
So far, Sharonda really enjoys her service. “It’s a warm environment to work in and the whole team is very caring,” she later said. She also likes to work in an environment where there is “accountability within the workplace,” and she likes that the office challenges you both professionally and personally. Sharonda greatly appreciates having two mentors, her supervisor Dr. Dixon and Dr. Curda, to help her reach her maximum potential.
We at Campus Compact Illinois wish Sharonda the very best as she continues her service year!