A heart for helping

A heart for helping

Apr 13
Sara Tondini, Animal Sciences graduate student

Making money makes some people happy (and money buys pizza, which makes us all happy). Climbing the corporate ladder and getting to the top makes other people happy. Making a name for yourself can be a source of happiness and these are all fine motives, but the College of ACES family tends to go a different route.

I don’t know exactly what I want to be when I grow up. I like too many subjects and have so many interests. I try to do all things to the best of my abilities to make professors and employers happy, so much so that I convince myself that I enjoy those things, even when I sometimes don’t. This has made it tough for me to nail down a specific path to that “dream job.” It wasn’t until recently that I discovered that it’s ok not to know that path and it’s ok not to know your “dream job.” What’s important is knowing the things that make you happy and then pursuing those things.

I’ve noticed that the faculty, staff, and students in the College of ACES have a heart for helping. Helping makes us happy. There’s a sense of selflessness dispersed throughout each major in this college, and I was reminded of that this past Monday night at the College of ACES and Paul A. Funk Recognition Awards. (I was also reminded of how much I enjoy food wrapped in bacon, but that’s just a side note.) Whether we’re traveling abroad to help developing countries grow food more efficiently or coming up with solutions to keep our water sources clean or guiding students like me during our time here and beyond, we’re all finding ways to shrink ourselves and increase others.

I’m humbled to be a part of a college that uses research and outreach and teaching to make a difference in this world. Sometimes you feel like just a number here, especially when you get lost, and you’re not sure where your path is, but I’ve realized that it’s less important to stand out, and it’s more important to help out. It’s ok not to know what you want to do, but I encourage you to find the things that make you happy, and if you have a heart for helping then you’re in the right place.