Monday, May 14, 2012

Spring Service!

The spring 2012 semester is almost over (good luck on all your finals everyone!) and it has been a great semester for service! I hope you saw all the posts from the Alternative Spring Break and the Stay-cation, but that is just a small part of the service programs the Office of Student Leadership and Activities (OSLA) helped to sponsor this spring. Let's take a stroll down memory lane and recap all the successful service our students have participated in.

On February 16, 2012 OSLA hosted another Senior Service Day by taking ten students to volunteer at the Hempstead Boys and Girls Club. While there, we helped mentor elementary aged school children by helping them with their homework, reading to them, and doing crafts. The students also spoke to the children about what it is like to be a college student and encouraged them to one day go to college as well. Both Hofstra students and the children had a great time!

From March 15 - 20, 2012 OSLA hosted two Genocide Awareness programs: Erase Genocide and Invisible Children. Erase Genocide is an annual awareness program setup in the Student Center Atrium that allows students a moment to stop and think about past and present genocides. The word "genocide" is written out on a large piece of banner paper in pencil and students are asked to stop and literally "erase genocide." This year we also invited Invisible Children to come to campus with an Ugandan genocide survivor to educate our students about the genocide currently going on in Uganda and share his story. At the time that they came Invisible Children was all over the news and around 100 students came out to learn more.

On April 21, 2012 OSLA co-sponsored the WalkINN to Fight Hunger with The Interfaith Nutrition Network (INN). The INN is Long Island's network of soup kitchens and homeless shelters and was started right here on Hofstra's campus almost thirty years ago. Since then, Hofstra and The INN have had a strong bond and continue to work together on a regular basis. Three years ago we started a new tradition, the WalkINN to Fight Hunger which is a fundraising walk for The INN right here on Hofstra's campus. Every year the walk continues to grow and this year was no exception! Hofstra students, faculty and staff along with the outside community helped raise over $5000 for the The INN.

On April 28 - 29, 2012 Hofstra hosted our 5th Annual Relay for Life and it was bigger and better than ever before! All year our student Relay for Life committee works alongside OSLA and the American Cancer Society to put on one of the largest on-campus events of the year. This year over 1000 members of the Hofstra community came out for the event which was held on the intramural fields and raised over $106,000 for the American Cancer Society. Participants walk all night in remembrance of those who have lost their battle with cancer, to support those who are currently battling the disease, to celebrate those who are survivors, and to help find a cure. It was an incredibly touching event that affected everyone who was in attendance.

Last, but certainly not least on May 10, 2012 eleven students handed out clothing, food and toiletries to the homeless on the streets of NYC with the Midnight Run program. For six weeks prior, the Midnight Run student committee was hard at work collecting clothing donations, going out into the community to ask for food donations from local vendors, and fundraising at the Dutch Festival and in the Student Center Atrium to ensure they had enough supplies to help the homeless. In the city we were able to help over 50 different people, giving them everything the student committee was able to collect. It was an eye-opening experience for the students to interact with the homeless and all the students agreed it was far better than they were expecting. OSLA sponsors a Midnight Run trip every semester.  

OSLA hosts various service projects all year long, so make sure to take advantage of these great opportunities next year!


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