Volunteer Spotlight – CJ Langley, HEART volunteer at Billingsville
November 28, 2013
Several months into his new role on EnPro Industries’ accounting team, an invitation from a colleague caught C. J.’s attention. “We’ll create teams to cover a weekly tutoring commitment in support of students who need help. Who wants to ‘give back’?” his colleague Paul Pathikal advertised at an ice cream break one afternoon. “It really confirmed my decision,” C. J. says of his recent career move.
A product of public schools himself, from Jacksonville NC to UNC-CH, C. J. was intrigued by this opportunity to support the community. He remembered weekly visits to the library with his aunt and cousins during summer breaks that kickstarted his desire to read as well as his psychology studies at UNC-CH where he completed an Honors thesis on gender differences in African American students’ attitudes towards education. HEART Tutoring would provide an opportunity to see and shape this, firsthand.
When C. J. was introduced to his third grade HEART Tutoring student, he was nervous. “Kids are so honest!” he explains. He quickly saw that Jazmine, although several years below grade level in math, had much potential and simply needed more support. As weeks passed, Jazmine became demonstrably more enthusiastic about learning and unabashedly excited to work with C. J., asking, “When are you coming? Next Wednesday?”
C. J. says working with Jazmine makes him grateful for the support he received from his family growing up. Just a few weeks ago, he sent a text to his mother and aunt thanking them for nourishing his scholastic growth by challenging him academically. In the office, EnPro colleagues enjoy sharing reports of their students’ progress and treasure the deepened perspective gained through service each week.
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