On October 27th, I attended the CRIS Mural Painting event at Fouse Elementary School. This event met the requirements for a service event. At the event, we were paired with students from the elementary and middle school to paint murals and create leaves with inspirational quotes. I had a great time getting to know the student that I painted the mural with and it served as a great reminder of the importance of local involvement. As international affairs students, we often have in mind the goals of creating systemic changes and making broad strokes, but it’s just as important to consider our impact on local communities. Maintaining connections to local groups is essential so that when dealing with matters of international affairs, we’re able to keep in mind how individuals themselves are important and even gain insight as to what the thoughts are of those who will be affected by big-picture decisions but who aren’t directly involved in the decision-making. Even for those who don’t intend to work on an international scale, local engagement provides insight into what is going on within your community that may draw you to get involved somehow, whether politically, socially, or any other way that may push you to be an active citizen.