AmeriCorps Highlight: Hayley Uliana

Do you you ever wonder what happened to those awesome AmeriCorps staff who dedicated a year (or more!) to Trinity's Outreach Programs? For the month of February, we will be highlighted a few of our past members. This week, we'll check-in with one of our current AmeriCorps before the release of a Trinity Outreach publication, highlighting the service of many past AmeriCorps staff at Trinity.

Hayley Uliana has been an AmeriCorps member at Trinity since 2015 as the TAP Assistant, as well as being on staff with the Bobcat Learning Center. Origionally from Hawaii, Hayley is an Azuza Pacific graduate.

Trinity didn't feel as strange or foreign as jobs usually do when you first start - it was more like being adopted into a family. Now, don't go grabbing for those tissues just yet. While the staff at Trinity was more welcoming than I could have ever hoped for, it did not detract from the anxiety that accompanied me at the beginning of the year as I started working in Jason Lee Middle School and Bryant Montessori.

Halfway through my service year, I have found my place as  a tutor and mentor, having formed great relationships with several of the students. It is a hard thing at first when you just want to hurry up and get to that point where you are comfortable and know what you are doing in a program. It was definitely a test of my patience. This patience turned out to be a key player throughout my service time, extending as a valuable tool to not only my time at Jason Lee, but also to my primary focus, Trinity's Afterschool Program (TAP), a reading program that partners with Bryant Montessori. I have spent most of my time working with Bryant, being the assistant coordinator of TAP, and doing some in-class help during school hours.

The great thing about TAP is that it creates a space to really look at each student individually and figure out how they learn best. Getting to know a student, learning their interests and about their life outside the program has helped me feel much more connected to students. It's a whirlwind of work and memories; I'm definitely not in Kansas anymore, but I think I'm on to something better.