I work with college students at Vanderbilt University every day. I’m a House Director for one of the fraternities on campus and work for the Office of Greek Life as a Graduate Assistant. Vanderbilt is a competitive school, with highly motivated and driven students that want to be involved in as many things as possible. That can take a toll on the students after a while. Maintaining their school work, leading different student organizations, fulfilling their internship requirements, attending community service events with their chapter, and having some sort of free time to be a normal young adult is a lot to juggle. When I was in college and was stressed out because of all my involvement on campus I remember missing my family dog more than anything (sorry Mom & Dad!). It was hard to not be able to just take a break for a few minutes and play with my dog, scratch his head or go for a walk with him.
I had walked Cooper several weekends in a row with Middle Tennessee Boxer Rescue and he was just the funniest little goofball I’d ever met. I thought it would be a great idea to bring Cooper around the students that I work with, I also just wanted to spend more time with Cooper since he was such a sweetheart. It was right when finals had started so I knew that many of the students I work with would be stressed out and could use some doggy therapy. So I loaded up Cooper in my car and off to Vanderbilt we went! We stopped by several of the fraternity houses and the Office of Greek Life as well. Being able to see how happy the students were when they were interacting with Cooper, and how excited Cooper was to be around people was such a rewarding experience for me on both sides. It provided the students with the support of a goofy, loving dog right when they were the most stressed out, and it gave a rescue dog like Cooper the chance to feel loved and wanted. Because Cooper is such a handsome fellow it also gave me a platform to promote Middle Tennessee Boxer Rescue and the amazing work that they do. I made sure to mention the different volunteer opportunities available with MTBR and I’m hoping to have more opportunities for the students to interact with the MTBR rescue dogs in the future!
One picture is Cooper making himself quite at home on the couches in the Fraternity house.
The other picture is Cooper getting a belly rub in the backyard from some of the fraternity men.
It is through interactions like Catherine's that many of our dogs at MTBR learn how to be a great companion and ultimately become adoptable.
Consider volunteering or fostering. To inquire further visit http://www.mtbr.org/#.