Posts filed under 'Community Service'

Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program!

Every year a group of MAcc students participate in the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA). This program helps lower and middle income residents of Columbus correctly file their income taxes. The program is available on Fridays (5-8) and Saturdays (10-2:30) throughout January and February. I know this doesn’t sound like the most interesting or fun thing to do on your weekends but it actually is a very rewarding experience and we manage to have some fun!

I first volunteered when I was a sophomore at Ohio State through Beta Alpha Psi and now this year I am a Site Manager. Most volunteers work in pairs and one person prepares and then the other reviews it. This is what I initially did when I first volunteered and it is a great way to learn more about personal income taxes and learn a new software program (we use software from the IRS to prepare and file). Now, as a Site Manager, I am there to answer any questions that the students preparing and reviewing may have. This ranges from questions about tax issues, form abnormalities, or just general issues with the software. I have definitely become more confident in reviewing and answering questions after completing my first two VITA shifts, hopefully they continue to go well! If you are interested in learning more about the program, you can check it out here!

VITA

All the Volunteers from the first shift!


MAcc Gives Back

Twice each year, the MAcc program gets together to do a day of service in the greater Columbus community. Community service is something that had a large impact on my undergraduate experience, and so I was excited to participate in MAcc Gives Back. My group’s project site was a Habitat for Humanity ReStore, which is a nonprofit home improvement store and donation center. After a brief introduction to the store and its layout, we got to work. We split up into three smaller groups, and my group worked to reorganize and price rugs that were recently donated.

It was fun to work as a team to figure out the best way to move and measure some sizable rugs. In the middle of our project, a husband and wife entered the store and asked us to help them find a rug to put in their new infant’s nursery. We helped them pick out the softest and best-sized rug for her needs. It was nice to talk to customers in the store and be able to help them find the perfect item at a great price!

After finishing organizing the rugs, we cleaned and organized kitchen appliances until it was time to leave. Then we met up with other MAcc volunteers at the Varsity Club, the sports bar across the street from Fisher. It was very nice to volunteer in the community and share a Friday afternoon with my fellow MAcc students, faculty, and staff!

HABITAT

Habitat Group

FullSizeRender (3)

Hanging out at Varsity Club

 


Fisher Serves Community Service Day

This morning I had the opportunity to volunteer with Fisher Serves, the graduate business school community service organization. We traveled to Clarfield Urban Farm, a non-profit organization called Urban Farms of Central Ohio, which is  dedicated to utilizing unused land and turning it into community farms. They are actually expanding to three acres of land this coming year. Pretty neat organization! We helped to pull out the leftover squash and picked and shelled pinto beans. Everyone had a great time!

photo 4

 

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The Internship

The Internship-Vaughn and Wilson
Second year MBA students-they’re older, wiser, and more mature, right?  The first one in that list is guaranteed to happen.  The others, not necessarily, but the internship between the first and second year of the MBA program is aimed to help towards that.  This summer I interned as a Global Supply Chain Project Manager at Greif, which is a $4.5 billion industrial packaging company headquartered here in the Columbus area.

Greif Global Supply Chain
It was a great internship.  The Greif supply chain folks welcomed me as a full member of the team and never looked at me as an “intern”.  The projects I got to work on were ones that the other full time team members would have been working on if I weren’t there.  Not only that, but I also worked on a project that had an international focus and was able to travel to Amsterdam for a week during the summer to pitch the solution we had come up with to the leader of the business unit there.

I’ve found as a 2nd year MBA this year there are a lot of things I’ve been able to hit on from my internship at Greif while at career fairs and in interviews.  The things I learned while doing the internship have been beneficial in growing my experience and understanding of supply chain management, and it was largely due to the role I had there.  So, when looking for an internship it’s worthwhile to focus on what kind of internship it will be and if you’ll get a great experience out of it.  I sure had that at Greif, and was more than happy to intern there this summer.


Leadership Lessons

All first year students take a leadership course during their fall semester, which is taught by Dr. Tony Rucci. In this class, each team of five students is required to do a community service project and write a reflection paper about their experience.  My team chose to participate in Meals On Wheels.  Meals On Wheels is a program where volunteers deliver food to the homes of those who cannot afford to buy food, and who are either partially or completely house-bound.

My team of five was assigned to two delivery routes and given instructions on where and how to deliver the meals.  Some deliveries required signatures, and others did not.  Hot meals and cold meals were sealed inside individual trays, and hot meals came with a slice of bread and an apple.  Drink choices were skim or 2% milk.

I was prepared for the poverty we saw – probably better prepared than my teammates.  I grew up in a town where poverty is normative, and I was a volunteer tutor in an inner-city school while I was an undergrad.  I’ve seen hunger on children’s faces – in the ways they act and react – because I’ve studied next to and taught these children.  I was also prepared for the dirt and decay we encountered in some homes because I worked for a cleaning company in the summers.

But what I was not prepared for was the complete and total isolation we encountered.  Most of the people we brought meals to were elderly, and many were handicapped.  I wondered where their children were – their grandchildren.  I wondered it for at least the first hour.  That’s how long it took me to realize that they probably didn’t have children.  Or their children were dead.  Or lived in another state and couldn’t afford to visit often or financially support their aging parents.  And if you or your children can’t afford to hire an in-home nurse or move into assisted living or a nursing home, there isn’t much choice.  You’re stuck.

I was also unprepared for how little food we actually delivered. I greatly respect what Meals On Wheels does, and I think it’s a wonderful program.  I fully realize the funding and man-power limitations they face on a daily basis.  I also understand that, as an Italian, my beliefs in portion size are dramatically skewed.  But despite all of these things, the bottom line is that we only delivered one meal to each person.  One meal per person.  One meal per day.

Think about how much you eat in one day.

 

Our route took my team two hours to complete, from start to finish.  Two hours and we got to go home to full cupboards, clean floors, and air conditioning.  Two hours and we were back to being students, with all the academic, intellectual, social, and economic privileges that students have.

After an experience like that, you have to ask yourself what you’re doing with your life.  How are you helping anyone besides yourself?  And maybe you aren’t.  Maybe you’re just trying to survive grad school.  And maybe that’s the point.

Our leadership project was a good way for us to give back, to remind us of what is important, and to remember that despite the lengthy class discussions about profit margins, supply and demand curves, and increasing shareholders equity, money isn’t everything.  It isn’t even close.

 


MAcc Scrapbook

How the time has flown! I have gone from being a prospective MAcc student reading the My Fisher Grad Life Blog and wondering why some authors didn’t post more, to being a soon-to-be graduate who is impressed they posted so much! The past nine months have been the most intense period of self-growth and change I have ever experienced in my life. I met so many amazing people and was exposed to different perspectives on life and business. I know I will walk into my first full time job as a finance auditor at the Auditor of State’s office better prepared to be a successful professional thanks to my time at Fisher.

Here is a small sample of some of the things I was doing over the past year while I was too busy to blog:

50 Yard Line

Standing on the football field during Orientation

Class

Inside Arya’s Management and Control class

Corn maze

Heading into the corn maze at Circle S Farms

Picking pumpkins

Picking pumpkins!

Thao

I managed to get out and see Thao and the Get Down Stay Down and Neko Case at the Newport, a concert venue on High St. across from campus

Neko

Neko Case

Foxy!

Me and my boyfriend Brent all dressed up and ready to go to the Fisher Grad Student Halloween party

Fraud: never worth it

Aaron Beam talks about drugs, SEC and rock and roll during his MAcc talk

Held at the Faculty Club

The Class of 14 at the MAcc winter dinner

Christmas in bloom

A winter break girls day out to the Franklin Park Conservatory. Left to right: Liana, Lina, Dongqi, Yeajung and me

Our professor then hosted the speaker at his house

Barry Hoffman speaks to our Corporate Mergers and Acquisitions class about the Valassis-ADVO merger

Book your group ahead of time!

A bunch of hungry MAcc student getting pizza after hunting for a place to play lazer tag

The food was delicious!

I didn’t get pictures at the FISA’s Holi dinner so I snapped a selfie with my friend Ping before our Advanced Negotiations class

Tip: Place your napkin on your lap immediately when you sit down

My table at the MHRM etiquette dinner

The last ever MAcc talk, given by OSU's own Dr. Zhang on accounting research (my camera created the rainbow effect)

The last ever MAcc talk, given by OSU’s own Dr. Zhang on accounting research (my camera created the rainbow effect)

Group photo of MAcc students and alumni who participated in the spring MAcc gives back event. I helped organize the Dress for Success store in the Short North

Group photo of MAcc students and alumni who participated in the spring MAcc gives back event. I helped organize the Dress for Success store in the Short North

Also: travelling to Africa alone, working with Steve Jobs and her non-profit Free the Tampons

Nancy Kramer of Resource Marketing speaks to our Advanced Leadership class about her leadership legacy

AKA Grad School Prom

Action shot of the Fisher Formal

Me and my boyfriend Brent dressed up at the Fisher Formal

Me and my boyfriend Brent dressed up at the Fisher Formal

My friend Lina and I at the Formal

My friend Lina and I at the Formal

He plays the best music before class!

My last ever class- Dr. Mittendorf’s Non-Profit and Governmental Accounting course.


Summer Activities – Pelotonia

It is hard to believe, this this school year is already coming to a close.  Last August seems like such a short time ago, and the months have gone by in the blink of an eye.  I am currently in the middle of mid-term exams for the second term of the spring semester, and will be halfway through my MBA journey in under a month.

This summer is showing no signs of being any less busy, between working during my internship, to participating in the GAP program, and taking advantage of other opportunities around Columbus.  One of the activities that has occurred in Columbus every summer for the better part of the last decade is the Pelotonia charity bike ride, which raises funds for the James Cancer Center here on campus.  A short description from the ride’s website:

The model of Pelotonia remains simple: Pelotonia’s operating expenses are covered by funding partners so that 100% of every dollar raised by Pelotonia riders, virtual riders and volunteers goes directly to fund cancer research at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center—Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute. Pelotonia was initially funded with a five-year, $12.5 million commitment, with a goal to raise $39 million during this time period.

The ride has raised over $61 million dollars to help fund cancer research over the years, and is a great way to give back to the community.  This year, I will be riding as part of the Fisher College of Business team, along with several of my other classmates who are also going to be in the Columbus area over the summer.  So, along with my internship this summer, I will be balancing my training regime in order to prepare for the ride.  If you have any interest in learning more about myself and the other Fisher students who will be riding, you can follow this link:  Dan Reeder


Sustainability at Ohio State

That's right. Nada.

That’s right. Nada.

Last semester I was lucky enough to be a part of the Sustainability team of The Ohio State  University. Its major initiative – The Zero Waste Program, focuses on diverting 90% or higher of its waste materials away from landfills to be recycled and composted.

The Ohio Stadium, or the Horseshoe as it is popularly called, is now the largest stadium in the entire country to achieve zero waste. Last year, Ohio State won the 2012 Game Day Challenge, a competition in which we beat 78 other schools to divert the most football game day waste. More than 102,000 fans pack the stadium at any given game, and this is where the impact of the initiative is most visible. So, when thousands of fans are busy screaming and enjoying the game, members of our team are  walking around the stadium (and trudging along in the snow come winter) , faithfully inspecting the bins, recycling and composting.

Also, after the Indiana game, our entire team went out on the football field and had our photo shoot for the season. This was also the first time I got to actually be ON the football field, so I wasn’t complaining. And did I also mention that it was snowing heavily? We spent a good forty five minutes taking pictures on the field and it was totally awesome.

 

 

Just look at all that stadium !

Just look at all that stadium !

O - H !! Go Beyond.

O – H !! Go Beyond

 

All said and done, it is extremely humbling to work with people who volunteer their services time and again to give back to the society in this way. I feel quite fortunate just to be part of a movement that accomplishes the incredible feat of 120,000 pounds of diverted waste materials every season. It also gives me a great opportunity to widen my circle beyond the Fisher group of friends whom I usually interact with and meet some really interesting and wonderful people.

 


Bonding Time

Here is a photo of some of my classmates and I at the FisherServes volleyball tournament. We all contributed $5 to play in the tournament and it went to the charity of the winning team’s choice. It was a very fun and carefree event. There was music, pizza, and lots of laughter. I highly recommend getting involved with FisherServes. It is a community service based organization here at Fisher College of Business that connects all of the Fisher students and helps to strengthen our surrounding community. In the Spring there is the Fisher 5K and multiple events throughout the year, be sure to check out the website if you are interested.

Getting involved in organizations such as FisherServes is a great way to connect with classmates and to help strengthened friendships. It gives you a chance to bond outside of the classroom. Also, it never hurts to get involved because it is a great way to help build your resume as well. Being involved in many activities and working in teams is an awesome way to gain experience. As an MHRM student you will be working a lot in team environments so by actively participating in organizations such as this you are strengthening your skill set and having fun doesn’t sound too shabby! My advice get involved and have fun doing it :)

 


Bump, Set, Spike!

And the winner is …FLIPFLIP!

Friday night was the first volleyball tournament hosted by FisherServes (a student organization that focuses on volunteering and community service). I am the VP of Marketing for this organization and was so excited to be part of the team that put on this event.

Quick basics of the event:

FisherServes invited students from all programs to create a team for the tournament. There was a six player minim for teams and at least two girls needed to be present on the court at all times.

Players paid $5 to play and picked a charity to “play for”. FisherServes matched the funds raised and donated the total to the winning’s team charity.

So, obviously I am a little biased, but I thought it was a huge success. I was so touched by the generosity of the Fisher family.

The winning team on Friday was FLIP-FLIP. Due to their incredible volleyball skills, FisherServes will be giving $850 ($425 donated by the players and $425 matched by FisherServes) to the charity, Flip. This remarkable charity helps individuals live a lifestyle that prevents cancer through a shift of thinking and holistic approaches.

the winning team FLIP-FLIP and some members of the FisherServes Exec. Team

On FLIP-FLIP was Mary, Lindsey, Tara, Ryan, Todd and Joel. This combined team of MHRM’s & MBA’s played a hard fought game against, The Avengers, a team of talented MHRM students.

I know what you’re thinking – we have talented volleyball all-stars across ALL programs here at Fisher :)

*To learn more about FisherServes or other organizations that I am involved with, please see my recent post: Getting Involved – With Precision*

See everyone soon!

 


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