Interfaith Service Initiative
In Fiscal Year ’13, the COVE strengthened bonds with the interfaith community, building off of our commitment to the White House Interfaith Service Challenge initiated last year. The COVE partnered with the All Beliefs Community (ABC) in two days of service with Roots and Wings in Norwich, helping with food distribution for the organization’s Food Sense food stamps program. Volunteers from the ABC participated in the COVE’s MLK Day of Service. The COVE helped gather volunteers for some of the many service activities of Colgate’s religious groups.
The Max Shacknai COVE also sponsored an Interfaith Service Trip to Goettingen and Berlin, Germany, in May. The group of eight students, one staff, and one faculty member traveled to Germany to learn about a unique community centered on interfaith cooperation that has developed since World War II.
The group met with various religious organizations and community leaders, toured several historically significant sites in the Goettingen area and in Berlin, and learned from those actively engaged in interfaith work. The experience gave student leaders a toolkit to create a culture that is more supportive of interfaith literacy and cooperation in our own community.
First-Year Orientation Outreach Program
COVE sponsors a three-day pre-orientation service opportunity for first-year students called Outreach. Outreachers work in small groups on a variety of community projects designed to assist local organizations and agencies with their significant efforts.
Last year, 22 upperclassmen led 36 first-years in service experiences throughout the Hamilton and Utica communities. After each day of service, students reflected and discussed what their service experience might mean for their impending four years at Colgate. Overall, the program contributed more than 650 hours of service work in the short three-day span.
9/11 Day of Service
Last fall, the COVE joined the national network of more than one million Americans who serve their local communities in remembrance of the tragic events of September 11, 2001. The event encourages people campuswide to volunteer in the community as a means of paying tribute to the victims and heroes of 9/11.
Through our service we remember the remarkable way that our nation rose up in unity and service following the tragedy of the attacks. Last September, more than 65 students, staff, and faculty participated in the afternoon contributing 260 hours of service to 20 local community organizations.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service
We think Martin Luther King Jr. Day should be a day on, not a day off. Our goal is to bring people of various ages and backgrounds together to move our local community and nation closer to the “beloved community” that King envisioned.
On January 25, we joined the national commemoration of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy by hosting an MLK afternoon of service. Our students served at various community sites in Hamilton, Madison, Clinton, and Utica. This year more than 85 volunteers worked at 14 community organizations, combining for 376 total service hours.
Finding Money for Social Change Grant Writing Class
In the 9th year, the 12-week, certificate-based grant writing course brought together campus community visionaries, grant writing experts, and local nonprofit leaders to deliver weekly lectures to 36 Colgate students and local community member participants.
At its core, the course offers insight into the architecture of a grant. Concurrent to the weekly lectures, students were paired with six local nonprofits and charged with crafting a preliminary proposal that would serve as the foundation for a fully-formed grant proposal in the near future. By working closely with the nonprofit partners, students were able to see the class theories and lessons play out in real time.
High School Seminar Program
In its 53rd year, the High School Seminar Program continues to use Colgate’s resources to benefit the region by introducing area high school students to college-level topics that are not available at their schools. Meanwhile, it encourages college attendance by providing them with the opportunity to experience a taste of life on a college campus. This year, 13 area schools/programs sent 394 students to participate. During each session, students engage in three seminars taught by Colgate faculty and staff.
The COVE staff organizes an effort to repurpose items that students donate in the residence halls at the end of the academic year as they move off-campus. Volunteers spent more than 420 hours collecting and sorting the items in Starr Hockey Rink for pick up by 26 non-profit organizations located throughout Central New York.
The estimated worth of all salvaged items put into the hands of people who need them amounted to $23,000. Our partner organizations report that the individuals they serve receive much needed supplies to furnish transitional housing, provide warm clothing and bedding and educational materials, and stock food pantry shelves.