Grahl Center students serving in community this fall

Students in Kellogg Community College’s dedicated service learning course at the College’s Grahl Center in Coldwater are again working to benefit their community through a number of student-led initiatives taking place throughout the fall semester.

The course, SERV 200, combines service to the community with academic objectives to equally benefit the community and the student. This fall marks the third consecutive semester the Grahl Center has offered the course, which Bobbi Gagnon, director of the Grahl Center, said also benefits students by giving them more real-world experience before heading into the job market.

“Service learning creates a hands-on experience for students to apply their classroom learning while also helping students understand, appreciate and give back to the wonderful community we live in,” Gagnon said. “It is exciting to see our students actively planning and participating in such a wide variety of projects in our community.”

Throughout the semester-long class, led by instructor Ann Lown, students participate in projects that meet community needs and that involve self-reflection, self-discovery and the acquisition of values, skills and content knowledge.

Students this semester — pictured above in a photo courtesy of Gagnon — are working on projects including a pond hockey tournament to benefit the Branch County Coalition Against Domestic Violence; a Jell-O Drive for Feeding Branch County; a deer harvest outreach for the Branch Area Food Pantry; guided tours of the Hammond House Museum in Union City; a children’s tea party to benefit the Order of the Eastern Star; street crossing safety training for kindergarteners in Quincy; and an ongoing “Nails and Tales” initiative that involves a student painting nails and sharing conversation with the female residents at Maple Lawn Medical Care Facility.

KCC instituted a service learning requirement for most students pursuing an associate degree at the College beginning in Fall 2012, and each semester KCC students contribute hundreds of hours worth of reflective service work to their communities.

Organizations interested in being involved with service learning students at the Grahl Center may contact SERV 200 instructor Ann Lown at 278-3300.

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