2019 Glammy Finalist Blog Series: Nicole Fry, President
Today’s Glammy Finalist Blog Series feature is Nicole Fry, president of the Tiffin chapter of GlamourGals. Read below to learn about a special connection Nicole formed with a nursing home resident and how connections like these have inspired her future footsteps in the field of communications.
What you have learned from being a leader of your chapter?
While volunteering with GlamourGals, I have become a more patient, compassionate, and empathetic leader. My chapter began makeovers at Independence House in the dementia ward. Although it was often difficult because it reminded me of my grandfather, who also suffered from dementia, I learned to be patient with the residents. Through my time of listening to their stories, whether happy or sad, I have learned to step into their shoes and comfort them when they talk about a difficult time in their past.
This past December, right around Christmas, one of the residents I was close to passed away. Her name was Ivy, and through my time of seeing her at makeovers, we became close. She taught me a lot about what it means to be a strong and courageous woman. She shared a wealth of experiences with me: she survived the London Blitzkrieg attack in World War II and later volunteered with the Red Cross to clean help locate survivors, she worked in what used to be a predominantly male factory to help out the war effort, and she moved to America after the war with little money in her pocket and a child on her hip. These a just a few memories she shared with me. A day after her passing, I began to feel selfish for keeping these wonderful memories to myself. To honor her legacy, I wrote a letter to her family describing the memories that I had the honor of sharing with her. I also wanted to say a final goodbye and thank you to Ivy for sharing her incredible experiences with me, so I attended the funeral and hand delivered the letter to her family. As a chapter leader, I had never dealt with the passing of a resident before, especially one that I had shared a special friendship with. I was not sure if I had done the right thing until the family hugged me and thanked me for being kind to Ivy.
How have your experiences as a GlamourGals volunteer shaped your aspirations and future career goals?
Through my time with GlamourGals I have not only found my love for volunteering but also my love for interpersonal communications. As I have continued to volunteer and go to our chapters makeovers I have discovered how one small conversation can shape a person's day. To continue with interpersonal communications, I will be majoring in Communications at Hanover College in the fall. Once I earn my Bachelors degree in Communications, I plan on working with nonprofits by coordinating fundraisers and community outreach programs.