By S-LTA and S-LTM Amanda Tompkins
As a graduating senior it is hard to think about all of our favorite memories of college without getting sad, because we know that soon we will be without the people and things we have become so connected to. This semester in particular presented challenges that none of us thought we would face and we lost time spent together, BUT still stayed connected to each other. I knew at the beginning of the semester that I wanted to find a way to honor my fellow S-LTMs for all of the hard work we do, especially because we had two new TMs, but wasn’t sure how. Just a couple of weeks prior to our transition online, suspension of in-person service, and moving off campus – I sat down with each amazing member of my cohort and asked a few questions: Why did they become involved in S-L/become a TM; what their favorite S-L memory is; what are they taking away from S-L, whether relationships, skills, etc; and finally majors and minors. We all come from different backgrounds, both personal and academic, as well as geographic locations, but we are all part of the big crazy S-L family and will be connected to each other forever.
Erykah is a 4x S-LTA and a 3x S-LTM from Luanda, Angola who just graduated with her BA in International Affairs and Political Science! Erykah got involved with the S-L program because she wanted to learn more about the human aspect of S-L and to support students through their service journey. When she was ready, Erykah took the next step in her own S-L journey and became a TM to guide S-LTAs in their roles supporting S-L students. The opportunity to learn from our Program Director Becca and Assistant Director Lisa has been an invaluable experience for her. Erykah said her favorite S-L moments were every meeting, but if she had to be specific: the gingerbread house building contest from Fall 2019 S-LSL appreciation and this semester’s S-LSL social where she won a donut eating contest! For Erykah S-L means family and friends, which allowed her to build deep and meaningful connections with each TM cohort she has been a part of and each small group she led. Additionally, she has gained valuable leadership skills like time management, flexibility, and being more open-minded. Erykah isn’t sure what her next steps are, but I know she will do amazing things!
This was Dante’s first semester as an S-LTM, but he is a 3x S-LTA and former S-L student from Brooklyn, New York! He just graduated with his BS in Cellular and Molecular Biology and a minor in Psychology, He decided to get more involved with S-L because he loved his S-L course freshman year and wanted to stay a part of it, but couldn’t take any other S-L courses and figured this was the next best thing. His favorite S-L memory is from his very first S-L EXPO, which gave a science-fair type vibe, but the most exciting part for Dante was his class was next to the robotics team and he got to play with legos. Dante never thought he would be a TM, but this role has given him more confidence in his abilities and he wishes he had joined sooner. In the Fall, Dante is heading off on his next adventure and will be working in a research lab in New Haven, Connecticut!
Nancy is a 2x S-LTM and 4x S-LTA from Taiwan! She has a double major in Finance and Math, as well as being a member of a community service fraternity, and was a Community Service Leadership Award recipient for 2020. In Nancy’s first semester at Northeastern she was in an S-L class and said that her S-LTA was the reason she got involved in S-L beyond that first semester. Having so many S-LTA semesters under her belt, she says that her favorite S-L moment every semester is when her students realize the difference they are making and grow to love their service sites. Nancy says that the biggest things she is taking away from her many S-L roles and experiences, is becoming a more proactive leader and shaping her leadership style overall. Nancy will be attending Northeastern to earn her MS in Finance next year and is excited to be back on Team S-L!
Ben is from Piermont, New York and has been on the Street Team for eight semesters, five of those as a TM! Ben just graduated with a BS in Behavioral Neuroscience and a minor in Biochemistry. Ben had been on the Street Team for three semesters before a series of events led to him taking over as TM of the ST in Spring 2018, which was the first time he had ever led a group of people, but the nervousness he felt was overshadowed by his excitement at the opportunity. Ben’s favorite S-L memories are all S-LSL appreciations, which are planned by the S-LTMs at the end of each semester, but his ultimate favorite was the Spring 2018 S-Lurprise party with confetti cannons, ice cream cake, and a disco ball! He is truly grateful for the relationships he built and the opportunities to engage in the communities around Northeastern’s campus. Ben said that S-L has pushed him to become a stronger leader and strengthened his ability to manage different groups of people. In the Fall, Ben is headed to Yale University to pursue his Ph.D.
Sara is a 5x S-LTA, 2x ST member, and 2x TM from Connecticut! She is a Human Service major with a minor in Law & Public Policy, who just finished her third year at Northeastern. She got more involved with S-L because she had loved her S-L experience her first semester and had continued serving with her community partner beyond that. In addition, she had a really wonderful S-LTA who she really admired and could see the impact that S-L had on her TA. Sara’s favorite S-L memory is the ice cream cake from the S-Lurprise party that was Ben’s favorite (she just loves anything ice cream-related)! Through her S-L roles she has learned a lot about building relationships, improved her practical skills, and how to manager herself and time better Sara just loves talking to other people about how they approach service. In the Fall, Sara will be on co-op with the Pine Street Inn in Boston and plans to join the ST for a third time!
Shiko has been a S-LTA, on the Street Team 3x, and this was her first semester as a Team Manager! She is from San Leandro, California and is a Behavioral Neuroscience major with a minor in Africana Studies. Shiko chose to get more involved with S-L because she had a really great TA when she was an S-L student and she loved her service site, which was working with kids. Her favorite S-L memory is from when she was an S-L student – she had a particularly difficult student at her service site, but one day during the lesson she was teaching he jumped up and yelled “I love science!”. S-L has taught her a lot about being a leader, what it means to be relied on and how to be be more present in everything she does. She has also learned the importance of being accountable for the energy she brings to a space and built up her confidence! In the Fall, Shiko will be in classes and embarking on her second semester as a TM for the Street Team, but her first solo!
Lastly, I’m Amanda and I have held many roles with S-L: 3x S-LTA, 3x S-LTM, S-L Co-op (Spring/S1 2018) and this semester I was an office assistant for the S-L program! I am from Tacoma, Washington and just graduated with a BA in International Affairs and History and minors in German and Political Science. I came to S-L through my first co-op on a recommendation and have been part of the family ever since. I feel like every S-L memory is my favorite and I am so grateful to have built the relationships I have, as well as countless opportunities to become a better leader and a better human. S-L has given me so much through my time with the program, whether meaningful friendships, collaborative faculty relationships, or helping me to improve my public speaking skills and to manage my time better. Most of all, S-L gave me a home at Northeastern and I will treasure every memory. In the Fall I will be returning to Northeastern to earn a MS in Security and Resilience Studies and am so excited to rejoin the S-L fam!