First Impressions as a Second Year: Importance of Growth

Choosing to apply for on-campus groups is different as a sophomore than as a freshman. Sophomore year is a kind of verisimilitude, a fidelity to adulthood. I’m no longer a freshman, yet I’m still a teenage girl who sometimes punches herself in the face while trying to roll up her sleeve. But SOURCE knows growing up has a long shelf life. We’re not done growing after a year of college or an internship; however, the opportunities to recognize that are scarce. The need to grow as you get older becomes synonymous with inadequacy, a pejorative label skirted by charlatans. But at SOURCE, the need to grow is just that. A need. Something we irrefutably must do. This openness to feedback and growth acted as a magnet, irresistibly attracting me to the organization.

 But feedback alone is just a party trick.

 SOURCE motivates action. This feedback loop is not background music… unless you count the Cha Cha Slide as background music. It includes instructions (aka next steps) to implement the feedback. It gives you a “next time,” whether that next time is an Idea Jam, team meeting, workshop, or client meeting. There’s always something around the bend, or rather, on your GCal. There’s always an opportunity to act on the feedback.

 I clearly recall sitting down with my SOURCE Lead, Nisha, after our first team meeting to discuss my goals. Nisha is a first class superstar, juggling her many on-campus responsibilities and numerous job interviews, which leaves her with microscopic amounts of free time. Yet she made time for me. We separated my goals into personal and SOURCE-related. This was the first time an organization on campus overtly recognized and encouraged personal goals, largely because it’s as essential as our other goals. Using these personal goals as a springboard, we crafted next steps. We planted the seeds and created a watering schedule, giving me all the resources and opportunities to grow… even if it means I awkwardly wrap-up our team meetings.

 And this growth is a two-way street. SOURCE asks for our feedback and input to grow as an organization. Whether it be an internal lead sending out a Google Form for feedback or our manager, Jack Segal, asking the AC class, “What does SOURCE need?” I’m still working on an answer to that one. But I need SOURCE.

by RACHEL ALAYNICK