Freshman year of college can be one of the scariest times in your life. You are leaving home, learning how to fend for yourself without your parents and relatives, and finding out what you want to do with your life truly.
I faced all of these questions last year. From the get-go, I wanted to be a Psychology major since the beginning of high school since I have always love talking to people and asking and caring about their problems. Before I stepped on campus, I question whether I would want to stay in Birmingham and attend UAB or be a big girl and go off to another university in the state.
Because of my family life and of a certain acceptance to an honors program, I decided to stay in Birmingham, attend UAB, and be a Psychology major. I become all of these things, but I knew in my heart I wanted to be involved on campus. I didn’t want to be immersed in academics all four years. Freshman year, I was looking for something to be a part of and most of all, something to believe in. One day, I got an email from the Cru chapter on campus about a meeting of an organization starting on campus that would talk about human rights, including human trafficking.
From the meeting, I became shocked, confused, and angry about what was happening to these women and children. Why are they being trafficked? Why are their human rights being violated? How has this epidemic gone on for so long? I have still these questions on my mind. This was my introduction to what International Justice Mission was doing. I was introduced to people who were fighting against injustice on campus, and I became an instant evangelist for what they can do.
I have helped to put on awareness and advocacy campaigns to raise awareness about injustice in the past semesters. Last semester, I was taking seventeen hours of classes for the last time, and feeling a bit overwhelmed if I wanted to do both succeeding at my classes and running the chapter.
But this semester again I’m taking seventeen hours but not feeling that sense of being overwhelmed anymore. God placed this in my heart to spread the word about not only human trafficking, but all the injustices happening in the world; he wants me to lead this chapter and to finally have a secure place at UAB. So I listened, and put out a call to everyone on campus to heed about helping me lead the IJM Campus Chapter.
After speaking at Life180, my call was met by seven amazing individuals. So here we are, at the middle of the semester, on pins and nerves. But still wanting to spread the word and raising our voices for social justice. A few weeks ago, I was contacted by a student at Texas A&M University about our chapter being a part of a national movement of college campuses who will be conducting a week of awareness about human trafficking in April. I felt like this would be the best opportunity for the chapter right now to show how serious we are about this.
I know that I’m not going to singlehandedly end the injustice in the world. But by raising my voice as high as I can for the women, men, and children trapped by the injustices in the world, I will help make their pain more bearable and close to no suffering at all.
My goal for the chapter is to have many people, students, faculty members whatever to join us in the fight against injustice for the next few members. Besides the Freedom Movement in April, me and my leadership team have a few projects to tackle for the next few semesters.
That’s my story of finding a new calling, a calling to be an advocate for justice.
So if you want information about the chapter, visit us on Facebook, Twitter (@UAB_IJM), or contact us through email at firstname.lastname@example.org . If you want information about what the Freedom Movement will be at UAB, find us on facebook (Freedom Movement UAB) and contact us at email@example.com.
If you want to get to know me or have a question for me, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thanks for visiting our blog!
Until next time,
Jasmine E. Crenshaw
IJM @ UAB Campus Chapter President