CAS: Stamford students get creative with hands-on learning projects
Tell us more about your donation box project.
Chloe: I organized a seven-day trip to Cambodia in collaboration with Google and the non-government organization Green Umbrella to teach English and mathematics in local schools. It opened my eyes to another side of the world that we do not often see in Singapore. Unfortunately, I was not able to return for a second trip due to Covid-19, so I did a donation drive and asked the Stamford community to help donate clothes. We ended up with five huge boxes, and I shipped them to the community in Cambodia.
What inspired you to do this project?
I wanted to teach and give back to the community. When I first started planning the trip, my intention was to get some firsthand experience with community service without thinking that I would continue doing this project throughout high school. I felt impassioned by the idea of serving others – and therefore sent boxes to Cambodia since I was unable to go back to do a second trip. I got the Stamford community involved, to bring in some more international mindedness, and plan to continue these service trips throughout university.
What is Future Medics Society?
Ha Dan: I started this club with my friend, Natasha, last year. It’s a space where we kind of geek out about medicine with the other members. We hold presentations where we share and review medical scenarios or case studies so our peers can get a glimpse of what they might be doing if they go into the medical field.
Why did you start the club?
Due to the pandemic and its restrictions, we could not do much to gain experience in person. So my friend and I accumulated knowledge throughout summer and online internships. We thought it would be the perfect opportunity to give back to the Stamford community - it’s almost like second nature that whenever there’s something to share with others, I want it to be public knowledge. Recently one of the members commented that she felt inspired by this club to further explore her interest in the medical field. It really felt rewarding to hear that.
How has CAS impacted you and your learning?
Chloe: It helps you grow as a person. CAS also strikes a balance between my academic work and social life. I get to meet people and make connections through organizing and carrying out these projects.
Ha Dan: It allowed me to develop different skills such as becoming more empathetic and reflective of my actions. CAS is never a one-person project; it’s very collaborative and you learn how to be patient and listen to others. Students are usually busy with their academic life, and CAS really slows us down in terms of making time to reflect on what we do and understand the value of it.
What are your future goals?
Chloe: Following the Cambodia project, I know for a fact that I want to create my own startup and help underdeveloped communities. I’m currently learning about sustainable design in my design and business courses, so it’s become a life goal to give these communities access to resources.
Ha Dan: CAS let me dip my feet into different subjects. Going from the Future Medics Society, I’m considering following a humanitarian group and becoming a medical professor. CAS showed me my future.