Meet our May Volunteer of the Month, Michelle German!
How did you first hear about GENaustin? What made you decide to get involved?
After completing the McCoy MBA program while working at Dell, I was eager to reengage my personal commitment to civic service and really impact my community. Just as I was starting to research volunteer opportunities, the Women In Search of Excellence (WISE) group at Dell was teaming up with GENaustin for to participate in the We Are Girls Conference. I was blown away by GENaustin’s mission and felt like this was something I could really get behind and make a difference. I volunteered immediately to be a part of the action and have been committed ever since.
What has been your favorite part or your most memorable experience being a GENaustin volunteer?
Over the past 2 years, I have volunteered with the We Are Girls Conference, the GirlConnect program and have coordinated a mentoring program that brings twelve 7th grade girls to tour the Dell Round Rock campus annually. All of the programs are extremely rewarding in different ways, but I always like how the GirlConnect program uniquely uses technology to help address issues that all girls face around body image and the media. Also, I am always so full of pride watching the girls in a GirlConnect session using Dell notebooks to create their own thoughtful Ezine content on the meaning of REAL BEAUTY. It is a great feeling to help give girls the tools to look past beauty stereotypes and to help recognize all the reasons they are beautiful just the way they are.
How has volunteering enriched your life?
I believe we need strong and confident young women to make our community great, but our young girls face challenges that test their self-esteem daily. Those challenges have only grown more extreme today with the addition of technology and a hyper-connected society. Having faced bullies in childhood myself, I feel a personal connection to these girls and want to help them combat the negative influences and to give them the ability to protect themselves during this complicated time in their lives. I always leave a GENaustin volunteer event feeling proud, joyful and like I am high-fiving my middle school self!
What would you say to someone who is thinking about volunteering with GENaustin?
Just get involved. I promise you won’t regret a moment of it. These girls need us in so many different ways. These girls are our future leaders, mothers, wives, employees and much more…and they need our attention and guidance to reach their full potential. Not only are you going to give the girls the gift of your insight, wisdom and perspective, they are going to give you many smiles and probably teach you a few things as well.