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Day of Service celebrates college and community

The seventh semiannual St. Charles Community College [SCC] Day of Service took place last month at various locations in St. Charles County, including Calvary Church, St. Charles County Boys and Girls Clubs, Sts. Joachim and Ann Care Services, SCC and more.

St. Charles Community College students assist with campus landscaping during the college’s spring Day of Service.

The Day of Service occurs in spring and fall semesters and is a way for SCC students, faculty and staff to participate in a variety of community service projects across St. Charles County. Organizers say it exemplifies SCC’s commitment to serving the community by focusing on student success and lifelong learning.

“By organizing it twice a year, faculty, staff and students have a chance to engage in community service more than once per academic year. Organizations in our community have varying needs, and different projects occur at different times of the year. Having the Day of Service every semester allows us to be more consistent with service to our community partners and the community,” said Bryonie Carter, associate professor of English and chair of the service-learning and civic engagement program at SCC.

Close to 100 volunteers participated, spread evenly across 13 on- and off-campus projects.

Carter said the volunteers were “gratified to help!”

“Helping others is normal in my country [the Phillippines],” SCC student Mary Rose Kidd said. “I think by volunteering you learn how to communicate with different people.”

Participants found that the experience was not only valuable, but eye-opening.

“When you see the project finished you realize you created value for your community. It’s a good feeling,” faculty member William Baca said.

SCC student Brandalyn Rasheed volunteered to pick up trash at Woodlands Park. When asked what she learned from the experience, Rasheed said, “People should be more conscious about how they affect their environment and take steps to do better.”

Robert Jones, student retention coordinator and interim student life manager, said it was his first Day of Service and that it was life-changing.

“How often do you see faculty, staff and students working together for a common cause? Now I truly understand why it is called a ‘community college,’” he said.

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