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Eye Serve Memphis – From an Idea to Reality

Hi, all! I’d like to talk about something I’ve become involved in that has been one of the most rewarding things I’ve done at SCO (and that’s saying a lot!). I’m working on getting my second semester of second year underway, and still the best advice I can offer to any student is to get involved. During first year, I was given the opportunity to be on the executive council for an up and coming idea. It started with a small group of students that wanted a volunteer opportunity in which SCO students could work alongside SCO alumni. Here’s the catch: We wanted all the volunteer opportunities to be non-eye related. We wanted a chance to serve all of Memphis – not just their eyes.

Starting out, we didn’t even have a name for this event. The executive council, made up of four students, met with SCO faculty to create this day of service from the ground up. We came up with the name (Eye Serve Memphis), the logo, the schedule, which volunteer organizations we wanted to partner with – everything. It was amazing to be here at SCO and have all these faculty letting us, the students, take charge of this event. Of course, they were always there with advice and help when we needed it, but largely it was up to us to organize this day. After about a year of planning, we were able to bring almost 100 students and alumni together to volunteer at various locations around Memphis that involved multiple volunteer organizations, such as Memphis Animal Services, Dorothy Day House, and Memphis Medical District Collaborative. I can’t even describe the overwhelming sense of accomplishment I felt when I watched the volunteers board the buses to head to their respective sites. All of our hard work and planning had finally come together. After the event was over, everyone met for lunch and got to talk about the wonderful experiences they had. The four students that comprised the executive council, myself included, even got to present to the SCO alumni council about how our day of service went and how we can make it even better next year. 

Overall, I just want to emphasize how open SCO is to new things and how willing they are to let their students take the lead. I’m amazed at how we were able to create an entire event from the ground up that was heavily student-led. SCO is a very empowering school where you can make your own opportunities. 

Now, I’m just looking forward to Eye Serve Memphis 2019!