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Stu­dents vol­un­teered at Helping Hands for the Day of Service. Courtesy | Sophia Berryhill

Hillsdale’s GOAL program held its third Day of Service on April 9, where teams of student vol­un­teers signed up to par­tic­ipate in service projects throughout Hillsdale County.

“The primary goal of the event is to encourage stu­dents to get out into the com­munity and par­tic­ipate in service pro­grams” GOAL Director Maya Kani­aupio said. “The second goal is a little more abstract — and that’s to help stu­dents form rela­tion­ships outside of the college and strengthen the rela­tionship between the college and the county.”

Stu­dents could sign-up with their dorm, sports team, Greek house, or off-campus group.

Vol­un­teers met at 9:30 a.m. in the Grewcock Student Union, where they were pro­vided with t‑shirts, donuts, and coffee before departing to their project. Service projects lasted three hours and pizza was served afterward.

Kani­aupio said this year’s event saw a dra­matic rise in participation.

“Sign-ups have typ­i­cally been in the low 200s, and this year we had more than 300 people sign up,” said Kaniaupio.

Some of the service projects included washing windows at Hillsdale Com­munity Library, walking dogs at the Humane Society, com­pleting yard work for the Com­munity Action Agency Preschool, and painting the lobby at Helping Hands Preg­nancy Resource Center

“The groundskeeper at the hos­pital was so happy to have this whole gaggle of guys come on down and help even though we obvi­ously weren’t trained or any­thing. We were able to help make their jobs a little easier and it gave us some­thing to do to give back to the com­munity,” said freshman Colin Joyce, who vol­un­teered with the Mu Alpha Fraternity.

Freshman Grace Umland said she looks forward to serving at Day of Service again.

“I think it’s a great oppor­tunity to help the Hillsdale com­munity and being able to spend time with friends and build those rela­tion­ships is really valuable,” Umland said. “It was a really cool experience.” 

The event was spon­sored by Hillsdale County Com­munity Foun­dation, Pizza Hut, Hillsdale College 1844 Society, and County National Bank.