GENEVA, N.Y.-The Geneva Heroes, a program that links students from Hobart and William Smith Colleges with those in the Geneva Middle School and St. Francis DeSales/St. Stephen’s School through service projects, was presented The President’s Bowl Award during the halftime of the recent Hobart vs. Franklin & Marshall football game. The award is given annually by the Colleges’ President Mark D. Gearan to a student organization that has made outstanding contributions to the quality of student life and the greater community.
“The Geneva Heroes program is a remarkable service to the Geneva community. This organization involves local middle school children in service learning projects run by Hobart and William Smith Colleges students,” Gearan said. “The program helps the middle school children to learn leadership, teambuilding, and how to give back to the community.”
The award is funded by the Hobart and William Smith Colleges Parents Association. This year’s committee chairs Don Webb, the parent of Hobart sophomore Andrew Webb of Falls Church, Va.; and Philip and Michaele Battles, the parents of Hobart senior Adam Battles, of McLean, Va. accompanied President Gearan onto the field for the presentation. Erin Rucker, a William Smith senior of Glendale, Calif., accepted the award on behalf of the Geneva Heroes.
Geneva Heroes is a 10-week service and leadership corps for eighth graders created, staffed, and run by Hobart and William Smith students each academic year. Hobart and William Smith Colleges students recruit participants from the local middle school and parochial school and then lead them in teambuilding, leadership, and service activities. Past corps members in high school often return to continue their service and assist with the program.
In past years, the Heroes participated in a day of Project Adventure leadership and teambuilding exercises, assisted in unearthing and re-righting headstones in historic Washington Street Cemetery, stripped and waxed floors at the Geneva Food Pantry, raked leaves with President Gearan for elderly citizens as part of public service project during inauguration weekend, cleaned and landscaped at Lakeview Mental Health, cleaned and moved furniture at the Boys and Girls Club, and spruced up the grounds of the Community Playground for the Geneva Recreation Department. In the spring, the Heroes intend to implement similar projects.
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