The Linfield Office of Community Engagement and Service hired five student leaders for its new Linfield Change Corps program for the 2011-12 academic year.
Sophomore Lori McEwen, alternative spring break and first year programs director and freshman Shelby Hollenbeck, communications and events director, will oversee the three issue area coordinators. These coordinators are freshman Ashlee Carlson, poverty: hunger & housing service coordinator; sophomore Collin Morris, environment & conservation service coordinator; and junior Amanda McGee, youth development & literacy service coordinator.
The leaders just completed their May training and orientation. However, they are required to come back to school early for the 2011-12 academic year to receive additional training. This training will be McGee’s first because she is abroad in Ireland this semester.
Change Corps is a group of people who engage in service projects and encourage other students to get involved. And, they are employees of the Community Engagement and Service office, VISTA Student Engagement Coordinator Lizzie Martinez said.
When hiring, Martinez said she was looking for students who are motivated, self-starters, committed and passionate about community service.
A few of the group’s objectives are to plan alternative spring breaks and long-term service opportunities. Martin Luther King Jr. Day (MLK Day) is included in this long-term service category. However, after receiving student feedback from this previous year, it was decided that MLK Day will be local-based this year. A few of the reasons for this included cost, time and transportation.
So far, Taste of Service is set to be the first service event of the school year. Stop Oregon Litter & Vandalism (SOLV) beach cleanup is another service opportunity that will be offered to students. Make a Difference Day will also be offered in the fall. However, something that will return next year is Children in the Community, which is reading to youth in transitional housing.
Another change for next year is Service Saturdays, which will rotate by community issues.
“I am so excited to have Change Corps in our office and to empower these students to go out and serve and encourage others,” Martinez said.
Martinez said that next year will be a building year since she is leaving and the Office of Community Engagement and Service is hiring a new VISTA Student Engagement Coordinator.
Jessica Prokop can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.