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For our students, one of the most fulfilling aspects of being a part of IOPSA is witnessing the lasting impact that their volunteer and philanthropic efforts have on the surrounding community. ODU students all see the value in taking time out of our "busy lives" to devote it towards making someone else's day. The intrinsic rewards of these sacrifices cannot be overstated.
Over the years, IOPSA has been involved in numerous volunteer and philanthropic events, including volunteering as greeters and as reading and games helpers with the Park Place Child Life Center during their Saturday Enrichment Program, volunteering as greeters or activity attendants at the Annual Park Place Arts Festival, contributing items to the Ronald McDonald House Charities household goods and food drive, and contributing items to the ForKids Medicine Drive, among many other events.
IOPSA endeavors as a group to shine a positive ray of sunlight on the underprivileged and the less fortunate by immersing itself in charity opportunities every semester!
With all of the class work, research projects, and meetings and accompanying worries, concerns, and stressors jammed packed in each graduate semester, IOPSA charity events are a good way to take a step back, consider someone else's situation, and be a positive influence and source of encouragement to them. This is an uplifting experience not only to those being helped but also to those doing the helping!
At ODU, we're on a mission to spread the word about I/O psychology and the opportunities it affords. Undergraduate researchers are an integral part of every I/O lab. Our doctoral students help them learn about the field of I/O, research methods, and the ins and outs of graduate school. It’s a win-win.
One of the best things about getting involved in research is the opportunity to build relationships with current graduate students. For me, it's awesome to work with people who are where I aspire to be in the future. It gives me a realistic preview of what it's like to be a graduate student. I also learn so much from working with them on a day to day basis. They are always willing to offer me nuggets of advice, answer my questions, and even help me with my own projects!
Mentoring undergraduate students is a great chance to get some assistance on research projects. More importantly, guiding undergraduates has highlighted ways I can improve my own work processes and has pushed me to gain a deeper understanding of statistics, research design, and I/O content in order to be a better resource for them.