Update us! What has happened to you since you last served on the NYAB?Since serving on the NYAB I graduated high school and have been attending Auburn University pursuing a degree in Integrative Biology with a minor in Business. While here I've gotten involved with Children's Miracle Network and Auburn University's Dance Marathon as well as a few other organizations on campus. I will be graduating this May and will be starting medical school at the University of South Carolina in the fall. I hope that going back home to Columbia where I first got involved with Souper Bowl of Caring will give me the opportunity to start working with them again.
What are you doing now?I'm currently finishing up my last semester at Auburn University and trying to wrap my head around the fact that I will actually be starting medical school in a few months! This semester I've focused mainly on concluding my undergraduate research, but outside of that, I spend a lot of my free time volunteering at a local day care and I try to participate in as many charity events on campus as I can. After working with Souper Bowl of Caring and serving on the NYAB, it seems almost impossible to break that habit of service!
How would you say serving on the NYAB influenced your life?Serving on the NYAB showed me that no matter how old you are, you can still help others around you and have an impact on their lives. The staff and other youth that I worked with helped me to discover what it means to really be a leader and make a difference in one's community, as well as how to be confident in situations that I had never experienced before. I can definitely say that I would be not be who I am today without the time that I spent on the NYAB and serving my community with Souper Bowl of Caring.
Anything you would like to tell future NYAB members?Serving on the NYAB gave me some of my favorite memories from high school. This was not just because of the friendships, but also because of the opportunities I was given to help my community. If you're thinking about applying to serve on the NYAB, you already have the initiative to make a difference. Never lose that drive, no matter what. If you do choose to apply to the NYAB and are accepted, make sure that you carry that initiative into the program. The experience will mean that much more and it will give you the ability to do more than you ever imagined to help fight hunger in your community.
Final thoughts?Souper Bowl of Caring has greatly affected my life since I first volunteered in Columbia's Service Blitz with my church youth group. Because of this organization I have seen the worst of hunger, but also the best of people willing to do something to fight it. If you're already a part of this fight, I encourage you to stick with it and get as many of your friends and family involved in this youth led initiative as you can. Together there is so much that we can do to battle hunger in our communities across the nation.
Congratulations, Michael Hobensack! Good luck in medical school! We hope to see you around Columbia.