Check out our QVS June National Update from Executive Director, Hilary Burgin.
When you look back on your early twenties, what do you remember? Can you recount a clear and linear path with one job leading to another? A move to a new city spurred by a specific event, or an incredible mentor influencing a weighty decision?
Interestingly, it’s often the case that at the very start of our journeys it feels quite the opposite: muddy and uncertain, with a complicated web of possible directions to go.
As I have transitioned into this new role as Executive Director, I have found myself with a unique vantage point. I find myself bearing witness to individuals at both ends of this journey.
I am, of course, deeply connected to young adults at the start of their journeys — as they discern their gifts, positionality, and calling during a year with QVS. I notice how they ache for deeply enriching experiences of community and value-driven professional work grounded in a spiritual life. Their open-heartedness, critique of the status quo, and community spirit continues to feed me in my new role.
Simultaneously, I am blessed to build relationships with Friends of all ages across the country. On the road — in Oregon and Georgia, California and Ohio — Friends share stories of their own early adulthood. They reflect on their search for meaningful work and a spiritual home with deep clarity. I have learned about resisting drafts and war taxes, momentary spiritual voids and depression, and a hope and faithfulness for the arc of justice.
Relationships with Friends across the country inspire and sustain me, reminding me of a long-standing tradition of Spirit-grounded service and witness.
After seven years of programming — of holding over 165 young adults’ spiritual and professional lives under our care — we see farther along the horizon of our program’s impact. QVS Alumni work at Quaker institutions like Earlham College; they work at tech companies in NYC and non-profit print magazines in Detroit; they go to graduate school for social work, law, and medicine. They do all of this equipped with the skills they learned about vocational discernment and faith in community. Meanwhile, alumni are engaged with local meetings, becoming members and sitting on committees, also offering feedback on how to create a more welcoming environment for other young adults.
Building on the strong foundation laid by our founder Christina Repoley, I am blessed to stand at this vantage point, being in relationship with young adult Fellows and Friends (of all ages!) as we journey together.
Please consider making a donation to QVS before the end of our fiscal year (July 31). In this final two months we have $55,000 to raise in order to reach our $308,000 goal. Will you help us close the gap?
We need your gift — whether it is $10,000 or $10 — to continue taking Spirit-led steps. At this time, any gifts from (or in honor of) individual QVS Alumni will be matched up to $20,000.
In deep gratitude for your continued support,