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Our #MYSERVICESTORY for the week comes from Lillia Smyers, a senior International Business major from Pittsburgh, PA!

At which service sites / community partners have you served or been a student liaison?

I have served at Esperanza, St. Francis Philosophy, Lake Erie Ink, and L'Arche.

"This semester I recommitted to Esperanza because I had such an amazing experience last semester. Esperanza is an organization that provides resources and English classes for Spanish-speaking immigrants here in Cleveland. My group's volunteer experiences both last semester and this semester are centered around us actually having a group of students and teaching them English grammar, vocabulary, and pronunciation. However, I quickly learned that the class was so much more than just exchanging language tips and doing lesson exercises. The bond we all created was strong and was based in all of us encouraging each other to push ourselves and to embrace learning together in community. By the end of the experience, I could say with confidence that those I was working with every week were not "my students." They are my friends, and I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to work with such an amazing organization taught me so much about learning, language, and most of all, people and the commonalities we all share. I am blessed to have an experience that makes me miss service as much as I do."

Each week we feature stories of students who have made service a cornerstone of their JCU experience.

Complete the form below to show us how you #ServeCLE! We’ll share your story on social media and in our weekly e-newsletter. If you’re a CSSA student liaison, you’ll earn points for your mentor group! Submit your service story at


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