Alfredo Mar’23–For my first summer as a college student, I am grateful to be working with the Nicholas Academic Centers(NAC). Theirmission is as follows: “To support underserved high school students to improve their academic performance, achieve their full scholarly and social potential, promote their admission to colleges, retention, and graduation”. As a graduated alumni from the NAC, I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to come back and work with the same staff members who helped me transition to college.

To give a more detailed illustration of the NAC, they are three separate locations as a hub for high school studentsto receive the proper resources to succeedin school. Resources range from tutors, trained social workers, college success staff, to discussion panels, workshops, field trips, and social networking. The department Iam helpingis the College Success team. They focus primarily on the financial side of this organization, as well as directly helping current students in college and those transitioning into them.

When I was introduced into the job, I learned about the technical process of documenting, combining, and organizing financial files of individual students. From the meeting I had with some members, I began working by creating and organizing expense reports for the year 2020. I made lots of mistakes which made me start from the very beginning. Despite this, I build the confidence to communicate my questions from this minor setback. To add on, I understood the work I was doing to help the department.

After completing that task, I began working on another project. The current high school graduates will shortly be moving onto college. For this reason, the NAC is hosting transitional workshops over the summer to prepare them onto the next part of their lives. My job has been to send reminders for each workshop to every student. On top of this, I was asked to keep track and contact a handful of studentswho have yet to sign up for the events. Lot of students did not respond or reply. From this, I have learned to keep an optomistic attitude because the work I am doing is to help them. I have learned to be polite and encourage someone I have never met.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, workingfrom home has been abig obstacle. I learned to be confident in myself to reach out for help, or offer my assistance. I have done a pretty good job of holding myself accountable, so I am working on more than what I am asked. Moreover, I have learned to ask meaningful questions, not just let important stuff slide. It has been an unusual summer, but I have learned to become an adult for myself. I am happy to have new relationships with the people who help me and to bring these new skills this coming semester!