Over the last couple of years I’ve had a chance to work more and more with Ann Gosky in the Student Affairs Office at Kent State and besides being unbelievably dedicated to student development she is also seriously committed to community development. The good news is that her position affords her the chance to combine these two passions into a single cause by connecting student volunteers with community needs.
Thousands of students raking leaves, cleaning yards, or tutoring might not make the local headlines as much as late night parties but that’s the untold story of student life in a college town that Ann helps script. YouTube probably doesn’t have many video shots of student volunteers in our community which is too bad because that’s the side of students that Ann gets to see every day, and that’s what she wanted to share with the rest of us.
Here’s a snapshot of student volunteerism in the 2009-10 academic year:
Ann was proud that a new program was launched, Adopt-A-Senior, that assisted residents of Kent with snow removal and students will be assisting again this upcoming school year but they will actually start the program with leaf clean-up in the Fall. Ann is hoping to designate two Saturdays in October and two in November when she can send students out into the neighborhoods for these events. She’s asked for help identifying households that could use a helpful hand. If you have some ideas, feel free to drop me an email.
I went to back to see the student volunteer numbers from the 2008-09 academic year and the numbers are up in every category. The total number of students engaged in community volunteerism is up 17%, and the total volunteer hours is up 49%. At a time when students are busier than ever they’re still finding time to give back to the community at record levels. Big thanks to all those volunteers!
I’ve heard it said that you should never underestimate the impact of students in neighborhoods and it’s great to see such a large number of students using their powers for good.