Victoria Low, Co-President
4th Year, Public Health Major
Years Involved with Tzu Chi(ng): 3.5
I’m co-president. My job is to make my members and officers happy, as well as to help UCSD Tzu Ching improve as an organization so that we can be sustainable for many years to come.
As president, I want to emphasize the motivations behind volunteerism and remind people why they choose to volunteer their time out of their busy college lives to help others. At the same time, I want to help them make personal connections so that members and officers can continue having this home away from home. My hope is that this officer cabinet can work to help the organization keep on improving while not losing sight of why we are all here.
I first became an officer because I wanted to influence other members through my personal enthusiasm to be more enthusiastic and passionate about the people they are helping. Because I care about Tzu Ching very much, I contribute my time and opinions whenever I can so that we can improve as an organization. While my active participation in Tzu Ching does not depend very much on whether or not I am an officer, it’s a lot easier to make an impact when you are one.
I am a part of Tzu Chi because I believe and appreciate the principles on which this foundation operates in terms of disaster relief and the missions. In middle school I was introduced to Tzu Chi through Year End Blessing Ceremonies and charity concerts my aunt would invite our family to; the principles of filial piety and sincerity that were conveyed have left a deep impression on me that keeps me involved in this organization today.
I think that what makes UCSD Tzu Ching a unique organization is the sincerity and warmth of the people that volunteer; this environment not only creates a warm atmosphere for the people we interact with during our events, but a homely environment in which members can find a home away from home. I have learned so much and grown so much because of volunteering with Tzu Ching and being an officer through my college years, so I care deeply about this org and the people in it because they are my extended family.
My favorite event has changed over the years from Everybody Reads in first year, Medical Outreach in second year, and Convalescent Home third year and now. Convalescent Home has a special place in my heart because over the years I have been able to connect with and get to know the seniors and I love them like I love my own grandparents. My grandmothers are both in Asia and I miss them dearly, but being with the seniors at our Convalescent Home is the closest I can get while I’m in San Diego.
Favorite Jing Si Aphorism:
“Love is like a cup of tea, when properly mixed, tastes wonderful with its light aroma. If it is too strong, it will be too bitter to drink.”
I enjoy tea, so the nuances of this Jing Si Aphorism are relatable to me, which I feel is an important aspect of Jing Si Aphorisms (having them be relatable and applicable to an individual’s life). I especially appreciate and relate to this Jing Si Aphorism as a reminder that love has many forms and depending on the person you are directing it to, it could be too strong or even not perceivable. I find it important to remind myself that people have different ways of expressing their love (and themselves in general) and if they’re not used to one form of love it could be too much; as such, expressions of love and feelings in general need to be customized to the person or cause that you are directing it towards.
What was your first impression of Tzu Chi(ng) and why did you stay?
At my first Orientation, I was floored by how welcoming and approachable the officers and alumni I met. I was so happy to be surrounded by people that enjoyed volunteering like I did, which was something I didn’t experience in high school when all my peers were volunteering to bolster their college applications.
I enjoyed interacting with Tzu Chi members as well, as I wrote on my first officer application that I have a secret motive for wanting to join Tzu Ching; I want to learn how to speak Taiwanese fluently so that I can (hopefully) impress my grandmothers when I next visit them. Learning Taiwanese for my family also means that I can have more fun and personal interactions with my mom and dad, rather than bonding over TV and the like.
Reflecting back on my past applications, my interactions in Tzu Ching and Tzu Chi have allowed me to improve my family relations and for me to grow as a person so much, but I stay because I love it here.