Location: Bowdoin / McKeen Center / Activity / 2008 / 2008 / Alyssa Chen

Alyssa Chen
Class of 2008

Posted November 24, 2008

As a high school student in Vermont, Alyssa Chen volunteered in her high school’s Key Club and always enjoyed the club’s activities working with kids. She naturally then signed up for youth-based volunteer activities at the Volunteer Fair during her first weeks as a first-year student at Bowdoin.

This was the beginning of an extensive involvement in service at Bowdoin. By the time she graduated, Alyssa had served as a tutor for the student-led Portland Housing Authority program, which sends groups of students to volunteer at the housing authority’s properties each weekday; as a mentor to a student for four years at Mt. Ararat Middle School; as a co-founder of the dialogue group the Undiscussed; and as a camp counselor at Camp Mariah, a Fresh Air Fund camp named after singer Mariah Carey.

Alyssa built upon these experiences with courses in the Department of Education, and now is serving as a teaching assistant at Eagle Rock School in Estes Park, Colorado, a school that serves students who have trouble succeeding in traditional academic programs. “I’ve grown up in such privilege,” she says. “It wouldn’t be fair not to give back.”

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“It was really interesting to learn about English as a Second Language (in education courses) and then see it in action at Portland Housing Authority.”