Stevens students are busy this holiday season giving back to local and global communities.
One of our school's four pillars is "Community," a word that is most often used by our families, students and staff when asked to describe Stevens. We strive to extend our strong internal connection outward, and engage with the larger community - both locally and globally. Faculty infuse service learning into the classroom throughout the year as a way of bringing our mission statement to life. We are excited to have also recently added service learning as a middle school elective option. Our students are encouraged to share their own ideas and work collaboratively with peers, faculty and our dedicated service learning committee to bring these efforts to fruition.
So far this year, individual students and classes have organized fundraisers and other service learning opportunities at both of our campuses, which support local and international causes. In addition to student-led initiatives that arise from everyday classroom learning, dedicated events are organized to serve the community including our voluntary day of service on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (January 20) and Springsgiving (May 11), during which our students select organizations of interest and engage in various ways of providing service. Read more about our students' efforts below!
Service Learning Elective:
Three different groups have emerged from the MISO research process (Media, Interview, Survey and Observation) and are engaging in the following:
- Soliciting donations of technology to support refugees helped by IRC (International Rescue Committee).
- Running a plastics collections drive to create artwork and pop up museum to raise awareness of the importance of recycling.
- Running a book drive in conjunction with the African Library Project with a goal of donating and shipping 1000 books to build a library for students in Ghana this winter.
- 8th grade bake sale for The Bahamas (Hoboken): Students learned about the devastating hurricane in The Bahamas and wanted to make a difference. They organized a bake sale and a 5K and raised over $2,000 towards the purchase of an ultrasound machine for a hospital there.
- 8th grade student (Newport): Since Springsgiving two years ago, 8th grader, Alizay, has been volunteering at York Street Project and spearheaded a toy drive in Kindergarten through 4th grade. Alizay will visit classes to deliver a mini-lesson on the work and needs of York Street. Her goal is to donate 120 toys for the children who live at St Joseph's and/or attend The Nurturing Place (different arms of York Street Project).
- 8th grade student (Newport): 8th grader, Story, has been volunteering at a food pantry in Jersey City Heights and organized a food drive for Thanksgiving. She spoke to each middle school advisory group and they each had a list of items that they contributed to the drive.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day
Plans are once again underway for a collaborative voluntary day of service with Mustard Seed and All Saints. Art with Heart, Sandwich Squad, Happy Feet, Whistle while you Work and Hope and Soap will continue again. This year, we are excited to announce we are going paper-free with online registration and donation functionality!
2nd Grade Sustainability
This year, 2nd graders were eager to expand their exploration of electricity to a wider study on energy, including natural resources and renewable and nonrenewable energy. As part of this work, they read both Green City and Energy Island by British author Allan Drummond to begin inquiry and build an understanding of these topics. The students demonstrated such a great interest in these read alouds that these topics have crossed into their permanent city project. Students are devoted to designing and creating a city that is green and rooted in sustainability and had the opportunity to interview Allan Drummond on a Skype interview in December.