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Monsurat Ottun ’02

 

Monsurat Ottun ‘02

monsurat-ottun-newMonsurat Ottun ’02 (Shea High School) graduated from Boston College in 2006 with a B.A. in Human Development with a focus on Community Advocacy and a minor in Faith, Peace and Justice. After graduation, she worked for Upward Bound and then was employed at MetLife, The Women’s Center of Rhode Island, and New Roots Providence. Monsurat currently works as a Program Manager at City Year Rhode Island. She manages 19 AmeriCorps members between the ages of 17 and 24 who serve as tutors and mentors at Gilbert Stuart Middle School and Roger Williams Middle School in Providence. “I like that I get to work to make a difference in the lives of youth,” she says. “I also love the way I get to work with my Corps members to help them develop their future goals and plans.”

 

Monsurat appreciates the opportunity she had to be mentored as a Crusader. “Being in the Crusade was like having a big brother or big sister to take you exploring places, introduce you to people around your community, and keep you focused on the college path,” she says. “I had people I could talk to and ask questions. When I was in elementary school, I remember learning how to make pizza and going on field trips. It felt special being called on the intercom at the end of the day to go hang out with the Crusade at Baldwin Elementary School. When I got older, the Crusade offered me the Kaplan courses for free so that I could prep for my SAT,” she continues. “I wouldn’t have done as well without it.”

 

For Monsurat, college was eye opening. “I learned a lot about life,” she says. “College allows you to look at the world from a completely different perspective. You get to move beyond your own small little microcosm of a community and see what other people are like, see the professional world a little bit, and learn a lot about things you may never have known about or experienced.” College also offered her an avenue for travel and study. “A huge experience for me was my service trip to Jamaica and studying abroad in Egypt for a semester,” she says.

 

Her advice for Crusaders? “Take it all in,” she says. “Take advantage of every opportunity. Meet as many people as possible. Take advantage of traveling opportunities and service opportunities. Take classes you just want to learn about for fun in addition to your core courses, and take your academics seriously. You’ll never have another opportunity like it, so use the time wisely and it’ll bring you success in the future!”

 

In her free time, Monsurat writes and sometimes performs poetry. Her first book of poems, Little Pink Dress (http://www.facebook.com/Little.Pink.Dress.byMOttun), was published in April 2011. She hosts workshops and panels for men and women about how to live healthy and successful lives and has founded a volunteer program at her mosque. “I love to volunteer and feel fortunate to be able to do so,” she says. “I am always busy. I am also taking classes at CCRI for Entrepreneurship and Marketing Certificates and look forward to graduating this May!”