Students, faculty and staff will participate in the first Day of Service of the 2017-2018 academic year on Saturday, Aug. 26. An immersive way to inaugurate the beginning of each school year, Day of Service will introduce the members of the Classes of 2021 and new students to the community as they volunteer at various sites in Geneva, and in the greater Ontario and Seneca counties. To follow the weekend’s events, visit the Orientation 2017 news page.
Organized by Orientation Coordinators Micaela Carney ’18 and Taner Bennerson ’18, with support from the Center for Community Engagement and Service-Learning, the Classes of 2021 and their Orientation Mentors will spend the morning at 29 locations, such as local community parks and trails, schools and non-profit agencies who need help tackling maintenance tasks, putting together care packages, clearing the community’s scenic parks and completing other tasks.
“Geneva is such a special, historical place. It’s important to us that we show the vibrancy and uniqueness of the community to the students and show them how they can get involved,” says Bennerson, a volunteer for Neighbors’ Night, an after-school program for local children.
Carney also emphasizes how Day of Service allows students to make connections with community members who they might end up getting to know, volunteering for, or partnering with throughout their four years at the Colleges. “Day of Service is such a great way for the incoming Classes and new transfer students to get to know places and people in the community,” Carney says. “It’s a fantastic introduction to the place the students will be living for the next few years and it shows them how to give back to a community that will give so much to them.”
Also involved in coordinating the day’s events are Orientation Leaders Ian Tulloch ’19 and Molly Gorelick ’19. As the Service Orientation Leaders, Tulloch and Gorelick will help lead the participants to the dozens of sites around the community, such as the Boys and Girls Club of Geneva, the Center of Concern in Geneva, or the Harmony Food Pantry in Waterloo, N.Y.
“My own Orientation to campus helped me realize what a vital role HWS plays in the community,” says Tulloch, who hopes the day will make a similar impact on the incoming first-year students.
Gorelick, who is the co-chair for the Day of Service club on campus, says the day helps underscore the importance of service within the community.
“Day of Service exemplifies the true spirit of service that can be seen here at HWS. Showing the first-year and transfer students that HWS is an engaged and involved institution encourages them to involve themselves in the community and shows them that there is always a way to give back,” says Gorelick.