Fernanda Pierre '14

Why I Volunteer

Fernanda Pierre '14

In what roles have you volunteered for Rice?

That's such a difficult question to answer! I volunteered right after O-Week in 2010 as part of Outreach Day my matriculating year and through PAIR, the Partnership for the Advancement and Immersion of Refugees, and never quite stopped. For the rest of my undergraduate years I mainly volunteered with the two organizations that fostered a space to validate my identity at Rice, HACER and BSA. My senior year I served as an admissions interviewer to make sure we continue to have owls that will learn from each other as much as through their coursework. After graduating, I volunteered with SOLAR and have come to serve as president. It's been a great way to meet fellow owls from different graduating years. I am so humbled to be trusted with the rest of SOLAR's leadership team to celebrate 50 years of Latinx organizations at Rice in 2022, reinvigorating our community to have another excellent 50 years ahead. 

Why do you volunteer for Rice?

I volunteer at Rice because it is a way to honor the people who came before me and invested their time, money, and talents towards my holistic education. I am able to have a meaningful career as a teacher and cultivate lifelong friendships because of opportunities that previous Rice volunteers allowed for me to have. 

What do you enjoy most about volunteering at Rice?

As a teacher I have a very specialized skill set. This makes it so fun for me to work towards initiatives with owls with other talents and careers I could not even begin to comprehend. I find it very rewarding to support undergraduates, especially first-generation college students, by connecting them to alumni they can relate to and model the rest of their college experience after. 

What's a fun Rice fact about you?

Although I was enrolled at Rice in 2012, I missed most of the centennial celebrations because I was studying abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina!

Why should others volunteer for Rice?

Many of us are fortunate enough to be blessed by the generosity of others that we will never be able to repay. What we all can do though, is be someone else's blessing.