Center For Service
Alternative Spring Break
Click the photo to watch the Alternative Spring Break Movie
Each spring semester the Center for Service works with a group of students who are interested in participating in a cultural immersion and community service program during their spring break. Past trips include Katrina relief work with National Wildlife Federation and Habitat for Humanity in the New Orleans area, home stays and community service in Belize, tutoring youth on the Navajo Nation, and just this past spring students returned from living with Mexican families in Cordoba, Mexico and helping construct traditional stoves in a rural village. Contact Spencer Moser on FirstClass to learn more.
Alternative Fall Break
Alternative Fall Breaks (AFB) provides MCLA students the chance to make a difference in their own communities while inspiring volunteer spirit, teamwork, and mutual understanding through cross-cultural training. AFB seeks to educate college and university communities through global and national outreach in order to dispel personal misconceptions and to build a web of communal interaction. AFB is also a chance for students from nearby colleges to meet and network. Contact Spencer Moser on Firstclass to learn more.
The Pathways Program
The Pathways Program inspires local youth to continue their education. This is accomplished through a combination of interactive workshops at neighborhood schools and community youth groups, as well as bringing youth onto the MCLA campus to experience first-hand all the social and academic opportunities that exist at college. These dynamic visits will broaden, extend and excite the current attitude that local youth, many who will be the first in their family to go onto college, have about the value and possibility of going onto college. The Program also seeks to build a sustained mentoring relationship with the youth through these activities. Contact Jennifer Baptisite on FirstClass to join or learn more.
Student Teacher In-Class Support (S.T.I.C.S.)
S.T.I.C.S. is a tutoring program that places MCLA undergraduate students into local elementary school classrooms. The volunteers assist the teacher by working with students who need extra help or are behind on school work. In addition to providing a valuable service to students and teachers, the volunteer receives hands on experience in a classroom setting; this may be particularly beneficial to anyone studying to get a degree in education or who wishes to work with children in the future. Contact Alyson Carey on FirstClass to join or learn more.
What People Are Saying
"I have been volunteering in the S.T.I.C.S. program for the past two semesters and have enjoyed it immensely. I have learned a lot about how a classroom runs and how my volunteer work fits into that. I like helping students; I also enjoy talking to them on a personal level. Despite the many needs in public education, teachers work hard to make sure students are truly getting something out of school - which is inspiring."
~Jamie Donchin; Freshman at MCLA
"The MCLA S.T.I.C.S. program is invaluable to the North Adams Public Schools. The student volunteer provides one-on-one help for children who need it, allowing the teacher to focus on the whole class. In a time when teachers have so much material to cover, student volunteers allow them to meet their requirements without leaving children behind in the work. Additionally, the children are also introduced to the idea of higher education and start to see it as attainable. College volunteers are an integral and necessary part of the North Adams Public Schools."
~Elizabeth Urban; North Adams Public School Volunteer Coordinator
The Write Stuff
The Write Stuff Program is an innovative program that connects MCLA volunteers as writing coaches and mentors with 5th-7th graders from the three local elementary schools. The program takes place on the MCLA campus allowing the elementary school students to participate in a "college" activity, then use that activity as a springboard for the writing asignments. This is an excellent opportunity to share your love of writing with youth who are in desperate need of literacy support and positive role modeling. Contact Christopher Hantman or Miles Thomas Moore on FirstClass to join or learn more.
What People Are Saying
"Many students associate writing with punishment, with homework, with reports, in other words with dread. The Write Stuff aims to acquaint students with the notion that writing can be fun." - Linda White (Creative writing workshop instructor spring 2007)
"The Write Stuff program taught the students the value of creative writing through the implementation of innovative prompts and ideas in the classroom. My presence as a student helper allowed the students to have individualized study time and help on their pieces, which really made a big difference."
- Jen Thomas (MCLA student volunteer)
Friends of Foster Families
Friends for Foster Families is a respite and support program for local foster families The MCLA volunteers serve as a support system for the foster parent and act as a mentors to the foster children. Volunteers fill a much needed role while gaining first hand experience into the foster care system. Contact Meghan Davidson on FirstClass to join or learn more.