My First Semester as a CBL Intern – Hannah Benson ’20

As a new year approaches, I am given the opportunity to look back on my first semester as a CBL intern. Besides spending Saturday mornings at my amazing CBL site, the Community Harvest Project, I have been most active in working as a discussion facilitator with students in our CBL classrooms here on campus. I am lucky enough to hear so many stories of others who see the true value and experience that comes from working in and with the Worcester community. I have seen so much progress and success. In the first session, I was able to introduce the program and speak about my own experience, trying my best to express how extraordinary this experience can really be. By the next time I entered the classroom for discussion, I saw nerves starting to disappear as students had begun to master the logistics of their sites and get past any awkwardness. By the last session, I saw confidence and even a strong desire to continue this kind of work, even after their class requirement has ended. Through a CBL course, students have made memories and learned how to talk about issues of social justice. I am excited to see this circle begin again, with a new round of CBL classes, watching those that have taken classes before continuing their passion and watching those new ones see what all the talk is about. I have found that Holy Cross students hesitate to leave their comfort zones, but when given a push they will come back into our community on the hill with a new and better perspective, having found what I know to be such valuable lessons from Community-Based Learning.

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