Worldwide campaign comes to CSB/SJU

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October 26, 2011

By Jill Yanish '13

Why do you do what you do?

This is the question a CSB/SJU program has been asking students, faculty and staff. The campaign is part of a worldwide, social media project that encourages people to answer the question of why they do what they do to promote intentional living.

The Bonner Leader Program, a program committed to social justice and leadership, brought the worldwide campaign to CSB/SJU on Oct. 18. Throughout the week, students, faculty and staff could write their answer to the question, 'Why do you do what you do?,' on paper and then have their picture taken with it.

CSB senior and co-director of the Bonner Leader Program Adia Zeman feels that it is important for everyone to ask the question.

"So often we take on tasks, jobs and activities without really thinking about what is motivating us to do so," Zeman said. "WDYDWYD? encourages people to think about what they are doing with their lives and then ask themselves a very scary question: Why?"

Marah Jacobson-Schulte, service-learning coordinator and director of the Bonner Leader Program, said that reflection is a key component of the campaign. She said the question can be broad, ranging from 'why am I studying for this test?' to 'why am I in this career field?'.

"Our hope is that we can dig a little deeper and see what is motivating our students and staff," Jacobson-Schulte said.

The Bonner Leader Program has made several posters of students with their WDYDWYD? sign. The group plans to continue the campaign through the year and make more posters with different students. Pictures of students with their signs will be uploaded on the official WDYDWYD website.

A panel of CSB alumnae kicked off the WDYDWYD? campaign week. The five alumnae work for nonprofit organizations committed to the common good.  Jacobson-Schulte said the panel of alumnae serves a great source of inspiration and connection for current students.

Panelist Emily Tohal Chaphalker, '07, works for Foster Grandparent Program. She stressed the importance making sure the organization's mission answers the question of WDYDWYD.

"I've always worked for organizations that have missions I believe in," Tohal Chaphalker said. "The mission is what really drives you."

The panelists agreed that CSB/SJU instilled social justice and the Benedictine values in them, which led them to do what they are doing. They credited the alum connection and the positive reputation of the institutes as reasons for landing their jobs.