Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Volunteer Profile: Dana Hall

"I am so happy that SMART exists, not only for the kids, but also because SMART has become a big part of my life as well."

Dana has been a SMART volunteer for three years, and is pictured here with Sonia, the student that she has been tutoring every week since she first became involved with the program. When they first started working together, Dana worried that she wasn't getting through to Sonia, and was convinced that Sonia wasn't thrilled about having a tutor; however, Dana pushed on, returning each week, and encouraging Sonia to challenge herself both socially and academically. A breakthrough came at the end of their first year of working together, when Sonia asked Dana for extra help in math. "She reached out to me--our time working together was making a difference, and she wanted more support. It was amazing!" 

In addition to the important tutoring work that Dana has taken on, she also assists with SMART fundraising through participation in the SMART Volunteer Board, and through personal pursuits. Together, Dana and her co-worker and fellow SMART volunteer, Liz Shapiro, started the Mensch of the Month calendar, now in its second year of production, and have been generously donating the calendars proceeds to SMART. 

In June, Sonia graduated from middle school, and will soon be starting her freshman year at San Francisco Waldorf School, where she will be attending on a full scholarship. Dana will continue to spend time with Sonia as a mentor, and will begin tutoring a new middle school-aged SMART Scholar this fall. Thank you Dana for all of your dedication to SMART, and for working to improve the academic outcomes for the Scholars we serve.

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