Category Archives: Great Stories

Second Chances

“Ms. Hilary, come here and look!”  As I stood in the middle of a goat pen, surrounded by my eight fourth-graders petting their red and white Boer goats, my head snapped in the direction of Felix’s voice. A year ago, I was a genetics PhD student who spent my days hunched over small tubes of DNA when I wasn’t shuffling from class to class.  My passion was science.  My mission was to earn a high salary and be a famous scientist.  After an emotional breakdown/quarter life crisis, I… Read More →


Coming from rural Appalachia to fast-paced, high energy Austin, Texas was a challenge. Adjusting to life with a highway from nearly any view, planning for an additional 20 minutes due to traffic, and living with an extremely new and diverse population was a daunting task.  Serving as an AmeriCorps Member with Travis County 4-H CAPITAL was even more daunting. While easing my way into city life, I was quickly submerged into my school with many new, fun, and eager students.  Not having a science or teaching background, I… Read More →

A Story of Greatness

When I found out I was teaching a Kindergarten class for my second semester as an AmeriCorps member in the Travis County 4-H CAPITAL AmeriCorps project I was really nervous to be working with such a young age group. I found it difficult to get out of my adult, rational mind and get on their level and understand their motivation for their actions. One particularly memorable experience was the day one student Jay became upset and everything I said did not seem to help him. Earlier in the… Read More →

My Great Story

Whatever talent, gift, or ability you have to impact your community in a positive manner, use it. It doesn’t matter how small a difference you think you make, the importance is that there is a difference being made at all. This is what I learned and I can see more clearly now, at the end of my third year as an AmeriCorps Member serving with the Travis County CAPITAL AmeriCorps Project. As an instructor with this program, I’ve lead and supported a variety of classes ranging from Gardening… Read More →

Jaden’s Story

Too cool for school. That’s how I would describe Jaden, one of my students at Langford Elementary school in Austin, Texas. He was too cool for science, and too cool for raising his hand in my class. Jaden would often blurt out snide remarks about the lesson or loudly announce that he was bored. Sometimes, I found myself disciplining him for disrespectful behavior toward his classmates. Essentially, he was a challenging student to have in my class, and seemed to crave a lot of attention. Initially, I reacted… Read More →

My Great Story by Barbara

Barbara Lundquist – AmeriCorps Volunteer (2011-2012) I began my second-year as an AmeriCorps member with 4-H CAPITAL by joining our Animal Science team. As eagerly as I anticipated working with our show goats, I was even more excited about helping our students learn to raise the goats. The responsibility of caring for animals almost always brings out the best in kids. For safety’s sake, animal science classes have a strict cap on the number of students enrolled, and at Hart Elementary, “goat class” is a very popular class…. Read More →

My Great Story by Abigail

Abigail Lozano – AmeriCorps Volunteer (2011-2012) When I consider the word motivation the first words that come to mind are those said by my late grandfather – “You’re tired? You’re young, you’re strong. You can’t be tired yet.” His words were simple yet had a profound impact on my younger brother and me. Anytime we excused ourselves from accomplishing something entirely in our abilities to do, there were those words and there he was. Through my experience as an instructor with 4-H CAPITAL, I have encountered students who… Read More →