Students to participate in annual service day

Stevenson students have an opportunity to make an impact by participating in a day of service at the fourth annual Mustangs Make a Difference Day on Friday, Oct. 12, 2018.

Students sign in for the 2017 Mustangs Make a Difference Day, an annual day of service. (Photo by Wornden Ly)

Mustangs Make a Difference Day (MMDD) is a campus-wide day of service designed for students, faculty and staff to make a positive difference while furthering their commitment to one of the university’s core values of “promoting a sense of community,” according to the Stevenson University website.

Morgan Somerville, director of student engagement, said, “Service is part of being an active community member, and part of being a human being is to help others; it is at our core, and it is one of our core values here at Stevenson.”

Prior to the first MMDD in 2015, Stevenson participated in “Build Community Day,” which enabled students to travel off-campus to complete service projects. MMDD represents the same mission and values of “Build Community Day,” but was created to give students, faculty, and staff a more accessible opportunity to participate in an on-campus event.

Since the first MMDD in fall 2015, hundreds of students have participated annually, according to Dr. Christine Moran, assistant vice president of student success. Last year, approximately 800 students attended the event. Moran and Somerville say the goal is to reach 1,000 attendees this year.

Dr. Kimberly Tucker, director of the Center for Environmental Sustainability, instructs students on the stream clean up for Mustangs Make a Difference Day in 2017. (Photo by Wornden Ly)

For the second consecutive year, all of the first-year seminar (FYS) classes are participating in the event and hosting hands-on service stations. Clubs, organizations and honor societies are registered to host service stations at the event as well.

In preparation for the event, all of the participating classes, clubs, and organizations are asked to plan or choose a service activity that meets the various needs of community partners in the Baltimore region and beyond.

Clubs, organizations and the FYS classes had the option of creating their own service station idea or select from a list in order to ensure the stations have variety.

For example, for the second year, the nursing FYS classes will use mannequins to teach hands-only CPR, how to stop a bleed, and other skills necessary to respond and manage emergency situations.

Alyssa Laue, a sophomore nursing major and psychology minor, said, “Last year I taught hands-on CPR and AED use to individuals who wanted to learn how to save lives in the event of an emergency. This experience helped me realize that I wanted to pursue a career in nursing education so I can continue to help teach others and serve others as well.”

Some of the other past service stations allowed people to create bird feeders for the Irvine Nature Center, ‘welcome home’ signs for Hugs for our Soldiers, stress balls for the Wellness Center, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for Helping Up Mission, care packages for veterans, and emergency preparedness kits for the American Red Cross, among several others.

The participating students are actively involved in all aspects of planning their service stations, including creating the activity, gathering materials, communicating and collaborating with community partners, and organizing and coordinating the project on the day of the event.

Moran said, “Mustangs Make a Difference Day provides an opportunity for students to learn more about non-profits and connect with various community partners. This in turn can lead to future service, research, or internship opportunities.”

All students, faculty, and staff are invited to attend and participate in the campus-wide day of service. The event will occur from 1-4 p.m. in the Garrison Quad on the Owings Mills campus. In the case of rain, the event will be moved to Rockland.

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