Students worked all semester, in and outside the classroom, to provide valuable services and products for the organization.
Assistant Professor Cindy Conn’s Business Communications students used skills learned in the classroom to provide beneficial direct service and communication materials to the Alamance County Boys & Girls Club.
The class grew close after spending the semester building relationships with each other, the staff and children at the Boys & Girls Club.
“I would have to say the biggest take-away has been the bond formed between the class,” said Will Manley ’16, a student in the course. “Participating in service learning classes and volunteering together outside of class has really created a great environment in the classroom.”
Students volunteered at the club throughout the semester and completed several projects to meet some of the needs the organization had. Each of the students completed nine hours of direct volunteering at the club in addition to several class projects and fundraisers.
“I wanted to facilitate a class that made a tangible difference in our community,” Conn said.
Students created brochures for the summer and after-school programs and compiled a newsletter for parents in both English and Spanish. Conn said the materials are meant to give the club more resources for parents and their children.
“We are responding to a couple of different needs,” Conn said. “We are trying to enhance communication with parents of club members and make it more recognizable in the community.”
Students also conducted a communication workshop on career-related topics for children in the Boys & Girls Club. The workshop included a tour of Elon’s campus for middle school students to see a college environment and to start thinking about higher education for themselves.
“We managed to keep the attention of 30 middle school students for about an hour-and-a-half and were able to answer really valuable questions. Some of these kids didn’t know that they could apply for scholarships through different companies and basically get paid to go to college,” said Sam Lutz ’16, a student currently taking the course. “Seeing that we were actually providing valuable information to them was very meaningful.”
Students in the service learning course also organized a profit share at Local Yogurt, a bake sale held in Moseley Center, and a Kickball Tournament for members of the club and Elon students. The bake sale raised more than $150 for the Boys & Girls Club.
The Business Communications course balances the core curriculum with service learning, providing students a unique opportunity to translate needs and feedback into a tangible product for a client.
“The service learning component of the Business Communications class allows me to receive a more dynamic understanding of the concepts we are learning in class,” Lutz said.