By Alexa Holliday:
Passing the halfway point of my service term has made me reflect on how much I have learned and grown in just a quick 6 months. Taking a position at Home ReSource as a Zero Waste Educator was both exciting and nerve-wracking. I was thrilled to have my first job working in the environmental field and excited to mix my passion of environmental work and education. What scared me a little was my confidence in my ability to speak in front of people.
Public speaking has always been something I struggled with. In grade school I never spoke up in class and chose to not turn in certain assignments that I knew I would have to explain in front of a group of people. Even in college, I was never the person to raise my hand often to answer questions and rarely engaged in class discussions.
It wasn’t until I started facing my fear of public speaking that I could begin to overcome it. I have now taught over 80 hours of classes to over 400 students and I couldn’t be more happy with how rewarding it feels to overcome my fears.
Not only has facing the obstacle in my life helped me grow and learn but the service work itself has been super rewarding. I speak in front of groups of 20-30 students and they are engaged and interested in the content of my lessons. Through this experience I have found that this generation really cares about waste reduction and environmental impacts. Seeing the growing interest in the issues amongst young people is inspiring and fulfilling.
I am really grateful for the opportunities that being an Americorps member have given me and the skills I have been able to obtain through two service terms. Americorps has been a great way for me to gain skills in different educational and environmental work settings and has strengthened my confidence and work experience.
Alexa Holliday graduated from the University of Montana in 2014 with a B.A. in Environmental Studies. Previously to joining Energy Corps, she served as an Americorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) member. With Americorps NCCC, Alexa provided educational support for elementary schools in Arizona and Colorado and created a solar energy exhibit for a children’s museum in Texas. Alexa is currently serving at Home Resource. She will support Missoula in becoming a Zero-Waste community and act as the primary youth educator for a waste reduction program.