Mary Bridge

"I worked as an English as a second language tutor through a health center for refugees in Buffalo, NY. I was constantly inspired by the people I met who had already endured so many obstacles, and yet continued to persevere by learning a new language and adopting to completely different cultural customs. I often think of these individuals, as their stories motivate me and remind me that I can accomplish anything I put my mind to."

Hometown:
Buffalo, NY

Educational Background:
B.A. in Psychology from Canisius College

Host Site:
Philadelphia Department of Public Health - Health Center 4

Why did you join NHC?
I hope to gain a further understanding of what it means to be a healthcare professional in our society today. I am also excited spend a year building relationships with other college graduates who share a similar interest in promoting a healthy lifestyle, equality, and access to healthcare.

What are your plans after AmeriCorps service?
I hope to attend medical school!

Tell us about an employment, service, or research experience that was important to you.
I worked as an English as a second language tutor through a health center for refugees in Buffalo, NY. I was constantly inspired by the people I met who had already endured so many obstacles, and yet continued to persevere by learning a new language and adopting to completely different cultural customs. I often think of these individuals, as their stories motivate me and remind me that I can accomplish anything I put my mind to.

What first sparked your interest in community service?
Community service became a major part of my life in high school. I was a president of the service club and involved in many different service organizations in Buffalo. One organization that particularly impacted me was the Lounsbury Adaptive Ski Program, where I taught individuals with mental and physical disabilities how to ski. My experiences through this program changed my life, as I was personally able to provide someone with the tools to accomplish something that they never thought was possible. The joy expressed from both the program participants as well as myself helped me to realize how rewarding and important it is to serve others.

What about Philadelphia excites you the most?
I am most excited to explore and live in a new city and meet new people.

What’s your favorite food?
My mom's raviolis!