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Throughout the 2022-23 Seattle Service Corps year, our team will be interviewing each member of this year’s corps—finding out more about who they are, where they came from, and the work they are doing here in Seattle. Today, we are highlighting SSC member Anthony Rodriguez [he/they]. We hope you enjoy reading more about the young adults you’ll see around the diocese in the upcoming months!

Q: What is your name, placement site, and job title?
A: My name is Anthony Rodriguez. My placement site is Mercy Housing Northwest, where I am a Food Security Coordinator.

Q: Where are you from?
A: I’m from Athens, Alabama.

Q: What does the place you’re from mean to you?
A: Athens is a small community that will always feel like home. Everyone knows each other there. Alabama is important to me because of the civil rights history there, like Rosa Parks and the Tuskegee Syphilis Study.

Q: Why did you choose to apply for Episcopal Service Corps?
A: I wanted a year to grow as a person outside of academia, and to discover myself and my passions. I was looking for opportunities to network outside of my community.

Q: What stuck out to you about Seattle Service Corps specifically?
A: First, I had a very welcoming interview with the program director. I chose Seattle because It was the furthest from home, which presented a growth opportunity.

Q: What is Seattle like compared to your hometown? How are they similar or different?
A: There’s much more different than similar. There is public transportation here, which I really didn’t have in Athens. The culture here is different too—the Seattle freeze is real! Lastly, Washington is a more progressive state than Alabama, which was a big change. I’m not sure of any similarities between Athens and Seattle yet.

Q: What are you enjoying about the service year so far?
A: I’m loving the number of people I’ve met so far at work, church, and home. I’m enjoying the city life, too. I’m not used to it yet, but it’s something I’ve wanted to experience all my life.

Q: What have you found challenging so far?
A: I’m struggling with being so far from my family and staying connected to my culture while here in Seattle.

Q: What does an average day at your placement site look like?
A: Many days at Mercy Housing, I go in early to set up for our food pantry, which lasts from 11-2. I help break the pantry down as well, then work on some administrative tasks. Later in the afternoon, I help facilitate a homework club and other activities for the youth in the community. My day-to-day responsibilities can vary a lot since we don’t have a food pantry every day of the week.

Q: What do you like to do outside of work?
A: I enjoy running, café-hopping, reading, and exploring the city. Some of my favorite places so far have been Pike Place market, Gas Works Park, Kerry Park, and the museums around the city. I’m also making time to study for the MCAT (Medical College Admission Test).

Q: What are some of your biggest hopes for your service year?
A: I hope to continue making friends, networking, creating a strong relationship with God, and making memories.

For more information on the Seattle Service Corps, read our previous blog post here.

Interview with a Seattle Service Corps Member: Anthony Rodriguez

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