The students are back, and the campus is abuzz!
Last week was Orientation Week at Ringling College, when new students flood the campus to get acquainted with each other, new faculty, new surroundings, and a new city. The week culminated in a weekend of 10 different service projects this Saturday, and over 400 new Ringling students volunteered to participate.
“We’re so grateful to all of our community partners who help make this day possible, and to our fellow staff and student leaders who have helped coordinate these projects,” says Rachel Levey-Baker, Director of Student Volunteerism and Service-Learning at the College. “It’s such a great opportunity to teach our new students about their new community and organizations that serve this area and a great way to get to know them.”
Susan Saulnier, Coordinator of Student Volunteerism, adds, “this was the largest Orientation Service Day yet, both in the size of the participating freshman class as well as in the non-profit partnerships for the day, with 9 sites total, 10 counting the on campus event.”
Covered by both the Sarasota News Network the Sarasota Herald-Tribune, students volunteered “at local organizations including Mote Marine Laboratory, All Faiths Food Bank, and the Sarasota Bay Estuary Program. A small group worked at The Haven, a 32-acre center and nonprofit intended to house, educate and aid people with disabilities.” In addition to the sites listed, students worked at Pocono Trail in Nokomis, Sarasota County Parks and Recreation, Pines of Sarasota, Orange Blossom Community Garden, InStride Equine Therapy, and Alta Vista Elementary School.
In an interview with the Herald-Tribune, new student Ale Salaman says of the experience, “I’m new here, and I want to blend into the community and immerse myself.”