The impact of Allison Vergara is seen throughout campus and into the community. The benches at the campus shuttle stops? She helped get them there. What about the new downtown Dearborn student discount card? She assisted with that effort too. She’s in the Environmental Interpretive Center’s natural areas weeding out invasive plants. And during tax season? Allison’s a certified tax preparer with the Accounting Aid Society, where she volunteers to help underprivileged find helpful tax benefits and file.
Allison says she’s guided to help wherever she sees a need and that made her university experience and time at UM-Dearborn memorable.
Allison, in her own words
On a defining life moment. “It was realizing that I was being part of something bigger than myself and my inner circle. I took the necessary steps to get out of my comfort zone. I joined different student organizations like Student Government Association, Beta Alpha Psi, the Accounting Aid Society and represented UM-Dearborn as a ‘student champion’ at the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (MICPA). Using the skills I learned in the classroom, I began to give back to the community. It did not take long to see how joining student organizations and getting out of my comfort zone strengthened my communication skills and professional demeanor. I was volunteering to help others, but it strengthened me as a person too.”
On the importance of multicultural experiences. “As an International Student mentor, I help students who are new to campus and the U.S. This is a great opportunity to explore and understand the extensive diversity that makes our campus so rich and unique. My role as a mentor has shaped my appreciation and understanding of multiple cultures, including my own — I am from Colombia. This experience has made me more conscious and confident in my ability to interact respectfully and inclusively. There’s a lot of fun events on campus to learn about different cultures too. For example, there’s a fashion show that displays cultural heritage during Inclusion Week.”
On ways to get involved. “Some of the most rewarding aspects of my time at UM-Dearborn have come from being involved. Whether it’s serving the less privileged communities by filing their taxes through the Accounting Aid Society with its Volunteer Income Tax Assistant program, teaching financial literacy through Junior Achievement in the Detroit public schools, or helping sort food bank items at Gleaners every winter during the Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, there are so many ways to get involved at UM-Dearborn. No matter what you are interested in, there is something for you — and all of these experiences will help you grow.”
On immediate plans for the future. "I'll join the State of Michigan Budget Division at the Office of Internal Audit Service as an intern this upcoming summer in Lansing and I’ve been accepted to the business school to pursue my MBA."