William’s Service Relfection

William Penzer

Jamie Lieberman

History 9


YPI Service Learning

            For my YPI service-learning project I visited the GO Project.  My group members and I found common social values in competence, family, and personal growth, and we decided that youth education was one of the closest embodiments of those values.  The GO Project works with families in downtown New York to help struggling elementary and middle school students keep up with the curriculum and supplement their learning if their schools are under resourced and unable to provide students with the tools that they need to succeed in high school and beyond.  When I began working with the GO Project, I went into the project with the mindset that while these students were under resourced, the reason that they would be going to the GO project was that they were in some was “slow” meaning that they would either have a learning disability or that they would just be incredibly slow learners.  However, after visiting the GO Project and seeing the third grade students testing and taking part in learning activities, I realized that they were really just normal students who were in no was mentally disabled and in no way less intelligent.  They tested just like normal students, asked questions just like normal students, and occasionally didn’t pay attention just like normal students.

In order to continue working with the GO Project I would be happy to continue volunteering with them over the weekends for the Saturday Program.  Besides volunteering however, one of the most important things that can be done to help the GO Project is to raise awareness for the social issue that they are trying to combat.  Too many students in NYC are underprivileged and aren’t given the opportunity to succeed and strive academically, even though they may be very intelligent.  YPI was a great outlet for letting people know about various social issues in New York, but YPI does not mark the end of raising awareness or helping our non-profit organizations.  I hope to continue my work with the GO project throughout high school and to provide students with the resources, confidence, and skills that they need to succeed throughout the remainder of their academic career.


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One thought on “William’s Service Relfection

  1. William, I enjoyed reading this articulate description of the Go Project and your involvement with them. It’s very common for people to assume that the kids using these programs are in some way less intelligent than more fortunate students, so I appreciate how you examined the way your own mindset evolved after working with them. You are so right that the basic conditions that make something like the GO project necessary are a product of bigger social justice issues. I look forward to reading or hearing more from you as you continue to work with the GO project.

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