Double the Amount of Students Complete Service Path Recognition

Virtual volunteering results in additional service opportunities

Mackenzie Higgins, Staff Writer

The Service Path Recognition Program requires students to complete 100 hours of service as well as a reflection on their experience. Students pursuing the award this year have been facing many challenges due to COVID-19 safety precautions and restrictions. Despite this, they are continuing to gain hours and there has even been more interest and participation this year than usual.

Lisa Sackreiter, the director of community service at Blake, explains that this year there are more than double the number of students they usually have participating in Service Path Recognition. She adds, “I think people are looking for meaningful ways to spend their time.” Many other regular activities have been canceled or shut down and participating in community service can fill that void as well as help the community during a time of immense struggle. Sackreiter reports that students this year have already logged a total of 800 service hours.

Skylar Wang ’22 is pursuing the award a second time this year and has noted the differences between her experiences. She explains, “Last year, I had a little bit of difficulty getting the hours in because a lot of the volunteering was in person, so there were logistical or transportation issues…Now that it’s online, it’s actually easier to coordinate volunteer times or just get things done, because hopping on Zoom is a lot easier.” While Wang does note that opportunities are more limited this year simply because they canít be done virtually, she believes that the skills and tools sheís picked up this year will carry over into future volunteering.

Wang also explains the importance of servicing the community this year in particular, she comments, “it’s especially important to provide support to communities right now [because] COVID has just magnified previously existing disparities. A lot of marginalized communities are the ones being hit hardest with job losses or other aspects of COVID.”