July 18, 2014 at 10:26 PM
CALDWELL, NJ- Freshman at Caldwell University upheld a time honored tradition of volunteering acts of service at various nonprofits and schools during their orientation throughout the months of June and July.
The incoming students engaged in responsibilities that spanned everything from cleaning classrooms and helping at the day camp at Our Lady Help of Christians School in East Orange, to packing boxes at the Community Food Bank of New Jersey in Hillside.
Groups of students also volunteered at the Caldwell Public Library, prepped for visitors and organized art supplies at the Essex County Environmental Center and cleaned the living spaces of animals at the Mt. Pleasant Animal Shelter. Others still assisted the Caldwell Kiwanis with a food drive for people in the area in need, performed necessary yard work in the garden at the Roseland Methodist Church and offered aid to the Goodwill Rescue Mission in Newark.
Gerald Manning, The Director of Operations at Goodwill Rescue Mission had this to say about the students from Caldwell University who came to serve: “ Although here for only 2 hours, the students exceeded our expectations with the work that they accomplished during that time. They processed more than we expected and we were not only able to fill our tables and clothing racks, but we also can begin to tag and store already sorted clothing and shoes, that can quickly and easily replenish our racks and tables when needed. Now we are able to quickly and easily serve those in need as they come to us for services and as they are referred to us from other agencies."
Dennis Brady, an incoming freshman from West Orange, New Jersey, volunteered with a group of nine students at Kingsland Manor, a historical site in Nutley. There they weeded, planted flowers and put down mulch. He was pleased with his experience engaging in community service. “It gave us an idea of what to look forward to as we come to be a part of the family of Caldwell University,” he said.
Welcoming the new students, President Nancy Blattner told them that engaging in the service projects is “not only a way to feel good about yourself, but also a way to give back to someone else. That’s part of what we are here at Caldwell University.” Service is one of the four pillars at the Catholic Dominican university, and Dr. Blattner urged the students to take advantage of the community service projects offered through the Office of Campus Ministry and the Office of Student Engagement.