Our final intercession dinner was an extremely moving experience. I’d known that I was in the presence of extraordinary, caring people all week long, but the final presentations proved exactly how thoughtful and ready to change the world my peers are. I’ve never met more motivated young people. Everyone’s projects captured the mood of the week perfectly, and I know that I won’t forget the lessons we’ve taught each other anytime soon.

My final act of commitment is to overall change the way I present myself to people I encounter day in and day out. Whether rich or poor, cheerful or depresses, I want to engage my fellow citizens with warmth and understanding. This can be as simple as lending a hand or smile when someone truly needs it.

The second part of my commitment is to use the hope I’ve seen in both my peers and the people we’ve met this week to encourage me to follow my dreams as well.  I’m passionate about the environment and want to lead a career that allows me to protect our world. In terms of being a conscientious citizen, holding a career that makes an impact is beyond important to me.

I wrote the following poem to remember both the lessons of the week and my act of commitment. It includes the names of several people who have inspired me this week. I hope you enjoy it. 🙂




Learning and growing in the Rollins way,

Building a house that will be a home someday.

For Nina and her children we braved new skills,

With thoughts of no shelter giving me chills.

Into their roof we built our souls and our hearts

So that the Nelson family may never be apart.

The tresses and beams served as a physical sign

Of the hardships of dancing with the poverty line.

But the impact was not made with hammers and nails,

But in the way that my mind has blazed a new trail.

Throughout my life it was always important

That the shelter I knew was from the world’s misfortunes.

But after this week I can finally conceive

That ignorance is never bliss, but naïve.

So from this day forward I solemnly swear

I will never pass through my day without a thought or a care.

Whether walking through campus or down Division Street,

I will acknowledge with a smile every soul that I meet.

Not a smile of pity or one that dismisses,

But one that sees battles and hearts full of wishes.

In the poor and forgotten, the face with no name,

I will see Nina’s laughter and the pride that filled James.

Little by little, I’ll transform my life

Until I’m ready to make my complete sacrifice.

Careers that exude our passions and goals

Allow us to give back when life takes its toll.

So I will follow my passions for the trees and the lakes,

Protecting the world’s beauty no matter what it takes.

I’ve seen a spark in Allan and a fire in Ilene,

They’ve given me the courage to follow my dream.

And so I will grow from simple member to active

By combining my experiences both thoughtful and interactive.

In this life we’re all students, and teachers too,

And this trip really altered all I thought that I knew.

And to my peers I will say, now that we’re done,

Never forget to be someone else’s ray of sun.


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About katrina

Hi! My name is Katrina and I am a freshman at Rollins College, studying environmental science and international business. My hometown is Crown Point, Indiana. Throughout my life, I have enjoyed the art of dance and am continuing to carry the discipline taught to dancers into my studies. At Rollins, I am active on Hall Council, a Fern Creek mentor, and an immersion trip leader. My true passion lies with the plight of the environment. I one day want to be an environmental consultant for major corporations, aiding companies in their journey to lessen the environmental footprint of their endeavors. As a sophomore, I will travel to Australia for a semester to work in the field of sustainability. My loving parents, Lisa and Michael, and two younger brothers, Leo and Matthew, have always supported my dreams. I couldn't be happier with their encouragement of my attendance at Rollins. I feel I have found an institution that will see my goals to fruition. I am currently enrolled in courses that are extremely pertinent to my interests, along with the added bonus of a sailing class. I can't wait to embark on this new adventure!

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