This archived article was written by: Austin Ashcraft
This past December, Soroptimist International, an organization devoted to helping women, awarded a sum of money to Rachel Smith to assist her efforts at the Parkdale Care Center. The money will be used to purchase supplies for a Spa Day for residents on Jan. 31. The project involves about 10 student volunteers from the cosmetology department that go to the Care Center and give the residents pedicures.
Smith has been involved in service since she was very young. Her dad provided a great example who, according to Smith, “Serves whatever chance he gets.” Seeing her dad so willing to give of himself has inspired her. “Because of my dad, service is kind of second nature to me,” she explains. “It makes me happy to see other people happy and to see how I can help others who are less fortunate than me. I just love to help them.”
Smith originally came in contact with Soroptimist International during her time in the Cosmetology program here on campus. A lady came in for a pedicure, and during their conversation, Smith mentioned her involvement in the USU-Eastern SUN Center, specifically with Parkdale Care Center. The lady, who was a member of Soroptimist International, decided to take the project to the Soroptimist Board, and the money was raised and given to Smith to facilitate her project. Soroptimist International’s philosophy of “Awareness, Advocacy, and Action,” is something that Smith has tried to emulate in her service. “I see a need and I try to fill it,” she explains. “I try to stand up for those who need my help most.”
The goal that Smith has is to help get people excited about the service she renders. “It’s tough to get people our age to be involved in service,” she comments. “When people our age hear that they have to go serve, they usually think it will be a big sacrifice, where it is really not much of a sacrifice at all. Giving back and helping makes you so much more happy than anything else you could do, so why not serve and bring that Joy into your life?”