After having a freshman year that might not have been the best, most of us would be hesitant to leave our respective comfort zones, but senior Brendan Cody from Cranston, Rhode Island had the opposite reaction.
Using his past experiences to fuel his fire, Cody got involved in numerous associations on campus in hopes to give back and make other people’s experiences better than his.
“I learned a lot about myself. Getting involved has built my confidence. It showed me that I do have greater abilities than I initially thought. A lot of people in this world are hard on themselves and focus on their shortcomings more than their accomplishments. Getting involved has taught me to focus more on positives,” he said.
Along with studying psychology at Rhode Island College, Cody is a double minor in communications and behavioral neuroscience. Even with this heavy course load, Cody holds numerous leadership positions on campus. After being an active member in the Resident Student Association (RSA) last year, Cody is now the vice president.
“The main goal of RSA is to facilitate community-building and make a difference on the residential side of campus, as well as reaching out to commuters by planning events and activities,” he said.
Following a similar pattern, Cody is also involved in the National Residence Hall Honorary (NRHH). He is the president of the Anchor Chapter of NRHH and strives to give back to both the RIC community and the greater Providence community. They host events such as blanket making for children’s hospitals and hold fundraisers to generate money for charity. His chapter received the Building Block Award from the region this past year. Cody himself received the Diamond Award, which recognizes four to five individuals nationwide for community involvement.
If being involved in RSA and NRHH were not enough, Cody also has two on-campus jobs, where he works in the alumni office. He works in the division of advancement and external relations as an in-office student assistant. He also works with the RIC Student Calling Program, where he seeks gifts and donations from RIC alumni.
“I love the diversity and inclusion of student life. RIC as an institution and especially student activities and student life does a lot to make sure that every individual feels included and accepted in the community.”
Because of the Resident Assistants (RAs) that Cody had his freshman year, he was able to learn to stand up for himself and grow as a person.
Serving as an RA this year has allowed him to give back to the RIC community and make the same impact on residents that his RAs had on him.
“My favorite part is being a support to residents and making connections with them and helping them make connections with each other,” he said.
With his college career down to its last year, Cody hopes to see himself as hall director or resident director at an institution. In later years, he hopes to use his psychology degree to counsel children and young adults with autism, and help develop methods of therapy that help them express themselves. No matter what Cody does, he will always be advocating for students and helping others reach their potential.