Sunspot Sunday #6 | #WhyICKI: Mae Sison
July 31, 2020
Hey Hi Hello CNH!
This week, I am proud to announce the beginning of the #WhyICKI Campaign which will look at members from all over the CNH District and their journeys through Circle K International. This campaign highlights the various paths, experiences, and reasons why CNH Circle K Members came back year after year – being able to share their story of “Why I CKI”.
Check back each month for a spotlight from each of the divisions of the Sunny CNH District, and learn more about what happens when CNH Circle K members ask themselves, #WhyICKI?
For the month of July, we will begin in the chilly mountains of the Capital Division, with our very first spotlight, Mae Sison!
Exciting – one word that many can relate to, one word that contains multitudes, and one word that describes Mae’s journey through Circle K International.
Mae Sison (She/Her/Hers), a Senior at the University of Nevada, Reno majoring in Biology & History, is entering their 3rd year in the Kiwanis Family! Through her Circle K Journey, Mae served as her home club fundraising chair, a CLSSP Committee Member, and currently serves as the Capital Division Executive Assistant.
To learn her story, read below:
- What was one moment in Circle K that let you know you were in the right club?
- When I first entered CKI, I felt like I was the “odd one out” because everybody seemed to know each other and I was an interloper. Despite these insecure feelings of mine, I still decided to apply on A-board for Fundraising Chair, and eventually, I also applied to be a part of Fall CLSSP. Being a part of Fall CLSSP brought out my loneliness because it really seemed like everyone in the group already knew each other based on our group interactions and when it came for the weekend of the event, I can’t even begin to describe how nervous I was to meet everyone else. At first, I was actually a little weirded out, because the group told me to meet them up in some random corn maze in the middle of Nowhere, California, and I thought “Well, this is a convenient place to get lost in”. But my suspicious feelings began to chip away when I met my group. The first one I met was Willie La because out of everyone in my group, he actually individually messaged me to get to know me more and so I felt like on some basis, that I knew him. He approached me with a big hug and he never left my side from that point, in that whole weekend. I met Brian Manganaan, who did not sound like the grandfather that he is in our group chat, and eventually, everyone else. But they all had the same approach to me. With kindness and familiarity, like I was someone they’ve known for years. I told myself that I was going to stay for just the event and drive back to Nevada, but I ended up staying the whole weekend to try and be there with my new friends. After that weekend, I kept going back to California for interclub service events, banquets or for basically any reason, just so I can meet with my newfound friends, but to also be more involved within the club. Being a part of Fall CLSSP introduced me to what Circle K really is about and to this day, I can’t help but continue to be more involved.
- Who is one person that you looked up to, or has made an impact on your Circle K Journey?
- Like most people, meeting Joey Pontillas has changed me. When I think of Joey, I think of a mentor or someone I can go to for help for anything, whether if it’s about something personal or something CKI-related. Joey was one of the first people I contacted when asking for advice about applying for this year’s Executive Assistant position because I felt like I’d be too inexperienced for the position and so I thought, why do it? But Joey made such an impact as an LTG last year for Capital, as well as individually for members like me because he’s amongst the handful of people that influenced my decision in staying in CKI.
- What is one piece of advice you would give to new members?
- Don’t be afraid to try new things.
- Any plans in the future in Circle K or the Kiwanis Family?
- For Circle K, I hope to network and meet others not only in my division but in the rest of the CNH District to hopefully be that person for someone that can influence their time in CKI for the better.
Be sure to check back each month for a new update to the #WhyICKI Campaign from each division!
Yours in Passion & Service
20/21 External Relations Chair