Hi Everyone!
This is really more of a goodbye as tomorrow is my last day as a VISTA :'(. I have absolutely loved my time serving with CTC so I want to say thank you to everyone who has made it such a great program (that's you HQ!)! You guys are great and supportive, not to mention extremely fun (makes all the difference).
To all of your other VISTAs who I have been so blessed to serve with, you rock! I loved getting to talk to everyone, going to conferences, forming new Facebook friendships, blogging with each other, sharing funny stories, talking on conference calls, etc. I hope everyone's terms have made an impact on their lives and the future holds even more!
So, just to recap on my life a bit (I learned when I logged in that the last time I posted a blog was 20 weeks ago... my bad), tomorrow I will have worked at the Pangea Foundation in San Diego for an entire year! I've learned so much and really been given a lot of responsibility and freedom to assist the organization. I always felt like a real employee and one of the team, but I am happy to say that starting Monday it's going to be official! I've been given the position of Systems Architect at Pangea Foundation. Basically, that means I get to work with the client (a wide variety of non-profits) to design the front-end/user interface of their new data management system (used for grant/funder evaluation and proving effectiveness). It's really pretty exciting and fulfilling. I help them: determine what fields need to be included in forms (and how the forms should be laid out), determine how they want to report their data (and how the reports will look), develop training materials/perform trainings, do tech support, etc.. I like the variety that my position offers me, I love my co-workers and I love feeling like what I do makes a difference. I definitely would not have been able to get this great position without putting in my time as an AmeriCorps first so I am really grateful for the opportunity to serve!
Some of the projects that I've accomplished while here include assisting in creating systems and training materials to help with and evaluate the hurricane relief effort, senior and low-income housing, and mentoring programs. I've gotten to travel a lot in order to train users and attend conferences as well (DC [ya, NTEN!!], Alabama, Mississippi, Seattle, soon Salt Lake City). All in all, pretty awesome.
The main struggle I had to overcome was figuring out my loan situation. My advice on that is to get the ball rolling as soon as possible so that if there are any issues you can get them taken care of before it's too late. Also, Danielle wrote a great doc on it that you should reference (Sorry Danielle, I'm too lazy to try and figure out how to reference it here...).
Anyone who wants to see more about me or keep in touch, please befriend me on Facebook - I keep that pretty well updated.
Good luck to everyone!

Comment from Jessica McCoy on September 6, 2007 - 4:57pm

Wow, congrats on the new job! That sounds great. I'm glad your year went so well! Mine did, too. I'll get aroud to writing a post sometime soon...

Hey, I might be coming down to SoCal sometime soon, a friend of mine is starting grad school at UCSD. We should hang out! I think I'll be there the last week of September.

Comment from Corey Funderburk on September 6, 2007 - 5:10pm

Definitely let me know! Maybe we can get together with Carly, that would be rad! Keep in touch!