Last year, Simona volunteered with CEN8 and talked to HEAR Coordinator, Joanie Magill, about her experiences.
What do you do as a volunteer with CEN8?
I work with kids from lower income families who usually can’t afford to learn more about the arts and so what I do, is I teach dance on Saturdays for an hour right here in the University. I have about six kids that I teach, ages 8-12. My plan is to teach them Ballroom, but I’ve started with Urban dancing as it’s what they like.
Why did you decide to become a volunteer?
I decided to become a volunteer for CEN8 because the idea of CEN8 attracted me as soon as I heard about it. I’ve always been close to the arts being a dancer myself. For my family as well it was at times hard to pay all the money that you need to pay when you need to train and as an artist in general and so the fact that I was able to help kids from lower income families build on their talents just seemed like a wonderful idea.
What skills have you gained from volunteering?
I’ve had to plan a lot and so I’ve improved a lot on my planning and organisational skills because I have to run an entire class and it has to be well planned if they are going to learn something by the end of it. I’ve also learned a lot more about how to work with kids and I’ve gained a lot of patience.
Why is it important for you to record your co-curricular activities on your HEAR?
I believe being able to record all of your activities is really important because all of these additional activities help you build up skills that will later on be helpful in the workforce. Sometimes you aren’t able to build these skills in your own course and so this is a nice way to record everything you are doing and show your potential employer the skills that you have gained during your time at University.
Does taking part in co-curricular activities enhance your experience as a student?
Definitely doing other activities outside of your course the way I am part of CEN8 and also the Debating Society helps you meet new people than you would normally meet on your course, people that study other things, you learn a lot more and you meet a lot more people.
Find out more about volunteering roles with CEN8 and how to record them on your HEAR on the HEAR area of learn.gold