Incoming students take part in regional service projects
Two dozen members of Elon University's Class of 2018 spent six days in July serving meals, building homes with Habitat for Humanity and volunteering at the Salvation Army Boys & Girls Club through a program hosted by the Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement.
The Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement welcomed to campus this month 24 incoming students for an annual summer program that introduces freshmen to service opportunities throughout the region.
Over the course of six days in July, Pre-Serve student facilitators led incoming students in several service projects. The program included team-building activities on Elon’s Challenge Course and “icebreakers” to learn more about one another before serving with various community partners and settling into their residence hall for the week.
Pre-serve is one of five Elon First-Year Summer Experiences designed to help new students transition into the Elon University community and feel more prepared before they enroll in the fall. The programs assist freshmen in meeting fellow classmates, faculty and staff through a variety of social, recreational or service activities both on and off-campus.
“Through Pre-Serve, we provided students with an introduction to different types of service, with social issues affecting the surrounding Elon area, from affordable housing to food insecurity,” said student facilitator Victoria Ford.
Participants contributed to Alamance County service projects that included: serving meals at Allied Churches; working at Peacehaven Community Farm alongside Elon University President Leo M. Lambert; building a house with Habitat for Humanity; assisting at Elon’s Loy Farm; organizing supplies for teachers at the Classroom Closet; and volunteering at The Salvation Army Boys and Girls Club.
“We hope that the students will take this experience and continue volunteering in the community when they return in the fall,” said student facilitator Kelsey Krug.
Each service site was designed to teach students about important social issues and how service can be used as a tool for personal growth and community building.
Participants also enjoyed outings with visits to downtown Greensboro, North Carolina; Lake Macintosh near campus; a tour of downtown Burlington, North Carolina; and a dinner with Elon’s Vice President for Student Life, Smith Jackson. Participants also met staff from the Office of Residence Life, Campus Recreation, the Center for Leadership, the Isabella Cannon Global Education Center and the Truitt Center for Religious and Spiritual Life.
The program ended July 19 with students reflecting on their service experience and learning how they can get involved and volunteer through the Kernodle Center.
For more information about Pre-Serve or other service opportunities, contact Evan Small at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Information submitted by Evan Small, assistant director of the Kernodle Center for Service Learning and Community Engagement