Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach

Introducing Tracy Oberle, CCAO Intern

June 5, 2013

  Tracy Oberle

Tracy Oberle

I was born and raised in Bay City, Michigan. I currently am a sophomore at Alma College where I major in political science. Being active on campus is very important to me. I am a Gamma Phi Beta sister, member of the political science club, and member of Amnesty International. My plans for the future are to move to Washington D.C. and earn my master’s degree in international relations. I love to learn about religions and their origins in order to allow myself to understand cultures different than my own. History is also one of my passions, especially during the World War II era. In the future I hope to work in the national security field or as an ambassador. I aspire to make a change in this world for the betterment of humankind.

Growing up as a Roman Catholic and attending Catholic school until 5th grade I have a sufficient understanding of my faith. I was taught by my family and by my school that all people are God’s children. My Grandma, one of the most inspirational people in my life, would tell me that it is not our job on this earth to judge others. God would evaluate their actions on judgment day, meanwhile we are to be kind to others and treat them the way we want them to treat us. She is a living example of this ideal way of thinking. At eighty years old she is the kind of Christian woman I hope to be one day. Her grace and kindheartedness can illuminate a room. Her acceptance of others is extraordinary and exemplifies the “Golden Rule” that was taught to me so long ago. Treat others the way you want to be treated. It is a simple concept that has been forgotten over the years. This is a teaching I try to live by everyday.

While working at the CCAO I hope to follow His teachings by reminding people that although we may come from different backgrounds, we are brothers and sisters. Through the teachings of the Bible I learned that our differences are not a reason for conflict or war, but rather for appreciation and respect of our fellow humankind. Without variety the world would be a dull place. I hope to share these teachings with others and bring a sense of understanding and compassion to those I come in contact with.

While working for the Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach I will be focusing on the rights of indigenous people. This topic is close to my heart because I am a Native American from the Sault Ste Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. Knowing about some of the problems that indigenous people around the globe are facing such as loss of culture and isolation or even worse in some areas, persecution and violent acts can be common. After the colonization of my tribe all of our traditions and ceremonies were changed and made to be more European, even things that were considered to be sacred such as marriages or ways of giving back to Mother Earth. Now only a handful of traditions are known and still practiced at powwows held on the reservation. My hope is to prevent more cultural loss in indigenous peoples in all nations. I am blessed to have the opportunity to live and work in Washington D.C. for this organization. I am looking forward to getting to know my coworkers and starting my new job. June 2nd can’t come soon enough!