NACURH Winner
Month: August 2017

NACURH, INC.

Community Service Program of the Month
5th Annual LLC Day of Service

School: Missouri State University Region: MACURH
Person in charge: Caitie Dyer Nominator: Caitie Dyer

Target Population: 1150 Time Needed to Organize: 3 months
Number of People in Attendance: 96 Date(s) of Program: August 18, 2017
Number of People Needed to Organize: 3 Cost of Program: 2200.00
On-Campus Population: 4100 Chapter Size: 41

Origin of Program:

The Living-Learning Community Day of Service was implemented at Missouri State in Fall 2013. The idea for this program sparked from an overheard phone conversation between a student and their guardian in which the student expressed thoughts and feelings of discomfort related to early move-in and being at Missouri State. The student was questioning why they chose to be involved in the LLC program and move in early if there was nothing to do when they arrived. Hearing the student, the Coordinator recognized there were probably multiple students who felt the same way about their experience. Since Fall 2013, the LLC Day of Service has been through significant change and growth. This fall we excitedly celebrated the program's 5th year with 96 student participants and 10 different local, non-profit organizations who served as service sites. The LLCs are proud to sponsor this unique service opportunity for their student population.

Word Count: 150


Please give a short description of the program:

Living-Learning Community (LLC) students at Missouri State are allowed to move in a day earlier than non-LLC students. In an effort to provide students with an opportunity to get connected and engaged with the community, LLC students are invited to sign up to volunteer with a local, non-profit organization in Springfield. The LLC Day of Service happens the day after early move in to encourage student engagement throughout Welcome Weekend. In August 2017, there were 10 service sites for students to volunteer with. These sites included; The Kitchen Inc., Fassnight Creek Farm, Ozark Food Harvest, Jordan Creek Watershed, Newborns in Need, Diaper Bank of the Ozarks, Ronald McDonald House at Cox Hospital, Ronald McDonald House at Mercy Hospital, Discovery Center, and the Campus Garden. Each site had a variety of projects available for students to assist with and complete. On the day of the event, students met at a centralized location to check in and meet their group, traveled together to the service site with a Resident Assistant group leader, and ended their experience with a guided reflection. The reflection consisted of written and verbal responses and centered around the following questions; What are the larger issues that caused the need for this organization to exist and depend on the help of volunteers? What impact will your service have on those who benefit from the organization? What did you learn about yourself from participating in this service? How does participating in the LLC Day of Service impact your engagement with or understanding of the University's Public Affairs Mission? Information collected from student reflections will be used to evaluate the program and determine whether to continue the program for upcoming years.

Word Count: 280


Goals of the program:

As a result of participating in the LLC Day of Service, we believe students will be able to (1) Articulate a positive experience where they believe they have made a difference in the community. (2) Feel connected to the Springfield area by volunteering with a local, non- profit organization benefiting the community. (3) Build meaningful relationships with other LLC students outside of the classroom. (4) Articulate what the Public Affairs Mission means to them personally. (5) Explain how they can use the Public Affairs Mission to make a difference on and off campus. (6) Attend an experience that involves critical thinking and self-reflection.The Missouri State University Public Affairs Mission is defined by three pillars: Community Engagement, Cultural Competence, and Ethical Leadership. Missouri State students are provided countless opportunities to educate, learn, and personalize what the three pillars mean to them on a personal level. The LLC Day of Service is designed to help students see the impact of their actions within the larger community. Students learn that in order to live in the global society, one must be competent of their cultural surroundings, be engaged in their community, and lead in an ethical way to address today's societal issues.

Word Count: 199


Positive and lasting effects of the program:

The 5th Annual LLC Day of Service had a positive effect not only on the students who participated in the event, but also on our partners in the larger Springfield community. Each of the community organizations who hosted students this year have served as LLC Day of Service sites for multiple years. When we reached out to gain interest, the organizations were excited to have our students come back and help at their sites. They shared fond memories of students who have participated throughout the years, and willingly volunteered to host LLC students again. This speaks to the relationships we have built through Day of Service, and the impact of our students at each site. During the reflection time, students talked about their volunteer experience in great detail. With guidance from the facilitator, students discussed difficult topics such as privilege, poverty, and sustainability. In their written reflection, students stated that they had learned more about the University Public Affairs Mission in the areas of Cultural Competence and Community Engagement. The LLC Day of Service served as a first step in understanding the University's mission for many of the students who participated in the event.

Word Count: 195


Short evaluation of the program:

Participants in the LLC Day of Service were majority new, first-year students at Missouri State University. The Day of Service program guided these students through the experience of meeting and engaging with other first-year students, serving with organizations in the community, and reflecting on their time volunteering. Having the program occur the day after LLC move in helps to immediately engage the students with the on-campus experience. Each part of the event is meant to connect students with Missouri State University's Public Affairs Mission and Pillars. From the responses gathered from the written reflection, each of the learning goals was addressed at some capacity. Some of the common sentiments included; learning how easy it is to get connected with community organizations, recognizing how just a little bit of time and awareness of social responsibility can make a difference, and learning about social issues present in the Springfield community (e.g. poverty, homelessness, and sustainability). Overall, participants were pleased with their experience and the connections made.

Word Count: 165


How could this program be adapted to other campuses?

This program could be adapted to any campus to create a positive impact for the specific needs of small towns and big cities across the country. The event could easily be modified to focus on social issues and taking an active role in assisting those impacted by those social issues. This program would work well for universities who are looking to get students connected to service opportunities and involved in their new community. If desired, this program could be expanded beyond residence hall or living-learning community students, and work to connect the larger campus community to one another as part of the opening week/weekend festivities. Day of Service is a great way to get students involved with the on-campus experience and connected to their new home that exists off campus.

Word Count: 130



Date of entry into database: 2017-09-04 21:33:13

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