Driving to and from campus I spend a lot of time listening to the radio. A recent Public Service Announcement by the National Guard got me thinking about how I do recruiting in Destino.
I’m white, so I’ve grown up with a hyper individualistic view on life. I’ve noticed that influences how I recruit Destino students to fall retreat, winter conference, or summer projects. In short, I think I recruit like the Army did from 2001-2006. I am trying to help my students be “An Army of One”. I tell them that it will help them become better leaders, they’ll grow in their faith, they’ll have an experience of a lifetime. Ultimately though, my recruitment only emphasizes the benefits for them. I’ve been an individualistic recruiter.
Contrast my approach (and that of the Army’s) with the National Guard Radio spots that are currently airing around the country (click below to listen):
Can you hear the difference? No longer is the emphasis placed on the person in and of themselves. Now they are recruiting you to come and help out your community.
Be there the moment your community needs you.
This is pure genius. I believe it speaks to the natural comunidad that exists for Latinos. They’re in college not just to further their own lives. Yes they want to do that. But so many want to get ahead in life so they can help their families and communities.
What if we started recruiting in Destino in ways that spoke to the group dynamic that Latinos live in? Fall Retreat becomes a place where you can help your Bible study connect to God and others. Summer Project is a way that God can not only use you overseas, but also give you the leadership skills you need to be there when your family or community needs you. An internship becomes not just about what they’ll get out of it, but it’s a way to serve the community they’ve been a part of for the past four years. (What if our different opportunities actually focused on helping the students be prepared to help their communities? What if that was an active part of our planning process, not just recruiting?)
What do you think? How could we get better at contextualizing recruiting? How else could this community-based mindset affect Destino? Our training? Our values? I’d love to hear what you think.
photo courtesy: The National Guard