It is difficult to express my expectations going into my first day of service at the Center for Literacy. It is a completely new experience for me, along with most of my classmates. I have never traveled to this area of Philadelphia and I have never tutored adults before. This will be an entirely new environment and I expect to be filled with mixed emotions. Tutoring adults to learn how to read, write, and do math will be a truly rewarding, but challenging experience. I feel privileged to have the opportunity, but at the same time I am nervous stepping into CFL for the first time.
As we are dropped off at CFL, I imagine we will be in an environment completely different than what we know. We are all so familiar and comfortable with the SJU campus, that stepping outside of the van will be a completely new territory. We will most likely be in an impoverished neighborhood. Our surroundings might be dangerous and I imagine people wandering the streets glaring at us and judging us on our appearance. I will feel like I do not belong, but I have to remember that we are there for a reason. I am going there to change an individual’s life.
I feel that there will be a lot of pressure on the first meeting with my learner. I am worried that I will say something wrong or that I will not be able to do what I am supposed to do. I know that there will be a lot of thoughts going through my head but the most important thing is to create a bond with my learner and allow him or her to open up and feel comfortable. I expect the learners to be somewhat apprehensive and of course nervous themselves. What I have to keep in mind, is that this will be an incredible experience. I have heard amazing things about service and I cannot wait to experience it myself. I know that this experience will be inspiring and life changing for both my learner and myself.