Candace Williams: Pursuing a life of service in NYC
Recent graduate Candace Williams will venture to the Big Apple come August to take part in a year of post-graduate service at Covenant House, a non-profit shelter for homeless youth.
A music major while at LMU, Candace hopes to continue living out Loyola's commitment to service, having an active interest in solving key social justice issues. She first learned of the opportunity through the Catholic Volunteer Network.
"LMU has made me unafraid of new experiences, and definitely re-invigorated my spirituality," the West Covina, Calif. native said. "We belong to each other as a human race, so we have to serve each other."
Candace says she will be a resident advisor on a floor of the shelter, helping teens find employment and finish their schooling.
"I hope the experience deepens my passion for life and gets me out of my comfort zone," she said.
Currently, Candace is interning at the Los Angeles Philharmonic in its artist department, working directly with musicians - a position she secured after applying through the LA County Arts Commission internship program. This is a natural fit for Candace, who is an accomplished pianist and student of musical theory.
Following her year of service, Candace plans to pursue a professional music career and explore opportunities in the film and television industry.
When originally choosing the university she would attend, Candace says the people at LMU ultimately drew her to the bluff.
"The students at LMU just seemed like such a well-rounded, close-knit bunch of leaders - it just made me want to be one of them."
Become one of them she did, lending her talents to a slew of different activities, including the Women's Chorus, Concert Choir and Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority.
Additionally, she spent a semester abroad in Paris, joined Campus Ministry on a pilgrimage to Rome to learn about St. Ignatius, and ventured with the Center for Service and Action on their California Prison Trip, which highlighted the prison industrial complex and prison reform.
Candace found her time abroad and adventures inspiring and motivational, themes intrinsic to an LMU education.
"They just made me realize what I truly care about in the world," she said, "made me really embrace LMU's mission statement."