Students Take Part in Day of Service
Less than 24 hours after moving the bulk of their worldly possessions onto the Cedar Crest College campus, first-year students were boarding yellow school buses to share in one of the College’s core principles—service to the community.
Together with many returning and transfer students and members of the faculty and staff, these “first-years” performed a variety of tasks at nearly two dozen social service agencies and other organizations during the College’s annual Day or Service on Aug. 24.
While some of the locations included fun and games—such as the “casino” event complete with roulette wheel, baccarat table and much more for residents at Liberty Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Allentown—many others involved cleaning, weeding and other landscaping activities on a hot summer day.
Regardless of their tasks, the first-year students understood the importance of their contributions.
“I’m pretty excited—I’ve never been in a nursing home to help people before,” said Lisa Lin, a nursing major from Lansford, Pa., who played card and board games with residents at Good Shepherd Nursing Network in Allentown. “We’re young and we should really help out those who can’t do everything for themselves anymore.”
First-year student Amantina Sosa from the Bronx, N.Y., who is undecided on her major, spent the morning cleaning and hand-making decorations for the program rooms at Community Bike Works in Allentown.
“It’s fun. This was a great chance for us (participating students) to get to know each other and to help out at the same time,” she said.
The students were far from alone in completing these projects. Chemical and Physical Sciences Professor Pam Kistler was down on her knees pulling weeds at Allentown’s Sixth Street Shelter with a handful of students.
“I think it’s important for students to see faculty out there with them. If we’re out there doing things like this with them, they see us in a more humanistic light,” she said. “They are starting to revitalize this part of the city, and it’s important to make this area look good.”
Sixth Street Shelter Director Marsha Eichelberger was grateful for the assistance she gets from the Cedar Crest College community not only on Day of Service, but throughout the year.
“Volunteers at the shelter allow us to do a lot of the things we do,” she said. “We have had a great partnership with Cedar Crest—they produce women leaders. Last year, we had a social work intern here all year who worked with families one-on-one.”
The students returned to campus shortly after noon, knowing they accomplished a great deal and eager to continue their first few days at the College.
“I really like the atmosphere at the school—everyone is welcoming and willing to help you with anything you need,” said nursing major Chelsea Malesky of Allentown.
“It’s been great getting to know people and getting to know my roommate,” said Katie Spickard, a Danville, Pa., resident who plans to study forensic science. “We both like to draw and take art classes.”