As I reach the end the first month of my fellowship with The Mission Continues, I can already realize that deciding to click that blue “Click Here To Apply ” button was one of the best decisions of my life. I have already gained so much knowledge about myself through both the application process as well as the first month’s assignment.
I have never really been one to clearly identify my goals. I have always just kind of aimed in the general direction and tried to be happy with the outcome. Through my fellowship I have learned that you will never hit the bull’s-eye of a target that doesn’t have a clearly defined center. By identifying my goals and writing them down, I can already see progress being made towards them in my life. It is almost as if my subconscious is now striving for these goals and helping to distinguish priorities.
Through my fellowship adviser Jeremy Bailey, I have been able to understand how my goals will affect my future and been able to really identify what those goals are. I knew what they were in my head, but Jeremy was able to help me understand them enough to put them into words on paper.
One of the best parts of the first month’s assignment is the identification of my fears in accomplishing my goals. Writing down goals is one thing, but when I clearly identify what scares me the most about my ability to achieve those goals, I reach a new level of honesty with myself, but I have also reached a new level of dedication towards those goals. I have reached out to the people who I feel can most help me and I have told them my fears of being able to attain my goals. In response they are able to identify opportunities for me to overcome these fears and realize my own ability to achieve.
My host organization, One Spark in Jacksonville Florida, was quite possibly the best host organization for me. The whole staff has welcomed me into the organization, and I already feel like part of the team. Each day that I go to One Spark I know that there will be a new challenge awaiting me.
In addition to my fellowship I am also a full time student at the University of North Florida studying Communications and Public Relations. My host site supervisor, Meredith O’Malley Johnson, is the Public Relations representative at One Spark. Meredith has worked hard to ensure that the task she assigns me will be relevant in my career training and progression. Through my fellowship I am receiving real world experience in my desired career field as well as learning very valuable leadership and discipline skills.
As a post 9-11 veteran, I can admit I have had trouble finding my place in the civilian work force. I struggle to find the same level of reward and feeling of duty that I received while in the military. While on active duty, I knew that my job was key to the overall mission and if I didn’t wake up and come to work each day there would parts of the mission that failed to be completed. I loved serving my country and woke up with a desire to do the best I could each day, and went to sleep each night knowing that I did. I have not found that feeling in the civilian world.
My fellowship at the Mission Continues is bringing some of that back, and I cannot wait to see what the next five months bring!