Jenn A., 2018-19 Austin City Hall Fellow
“Rather than going into the community, accessing their needs, and delivering a product that would add great value and benefit to the community members, true community engagement seeks to first meet and understand the various backgrounds and identities each resident member within the community holds and then tie that into the role they play in the greater image of the community. This project has allowed for me to put this understanding to practice not just from the class readings and discussion but within the community. Developing relationships with community stakeholders that have similar intentions of working with the community and also have more experience and knowledge about the residents within the community was a crucial element of our project.
Moving forward, I plan to hold tight to the experiences I gained from both working on this project and being a part of the program. As I continue to engage in the community in the future, I will be sure to channel the lessons I learned from this project as well as my strengths that I applied. I plan to engage with communities in a way that allows for them to consider what they would need in order to better develop their quality of living.“ – Jenn A.,
Diana G., 2018-19 Austin City Hall Fellow
“I was always interested in working in the public sector, but I never really thought about how to make it work. This fellowship helped me to understand the different paths I can take in the public sector and where my passion lies; what my strengths are and how I can use them for community work. It also allowed me to do deep self-reflection; which made me grow as a human being and find that I also need to take care of myself first because engaging with the community requires a lot of Energy.” – Diana G.
Bobford D., 2018-19 Austin City Hall Fellow
“At the beginning of the year, when I first entered the classroom. I was ignorant. My concept of capacity building and my understanding of the organization needed in order to do community work was absent.
Growing up in my house, I was never engaged in any communities outside of my family. . . . So, I wasn’t exposed to much history, politics, or people outside of school. However, this past year as an Austin City Hall Fellow really opened my eyes on history and politics interacts to create social issues in the community; and how crucial it is to work in teams in order to address those issues.” -Bobford D.