Baldwin Wallace Student Community Service Projects


Baldwin Wallace University Relations

Baldwin Wallace students participating in BW’s annual Dance Marathon, another service opportunity on campus.

NIcole Salapa, Feature Editor

On campus there are hundreds of activities, from sports to the arts, from philosophical discussion meetings to video games and humans versus zombies. Community service and volunteering, however, are in a league all of their own, and there are so many ways to give back.
On this campus, where you run into someone you know every day, it is a way to broaden your horizons and see that there is much more out there. There are opportunities to change lives, help people, and learn more along the way; we are only here four years, so why not? Well, if you’re unconvinced, take it from the leaders of some of these groups–they can attest more than anyone what benefits these groups hold.
“I  enjoy making an impact on people’s lives… and  I can do just that every single week,” said Liz Cherry, who directs weekly programs for the Office of Community Outreach (OCO) and serves as the Thursday  coordinator for the Cuyahoga County Board  of Developmental Disabilities (CCBDD) programs.
CCBDD programs have Baldwin Wallace students engage with adults with developmental disabilities  and  do simple tasks, like make crafts or play games. “Students do not have to commit to come each week, so [they] can come when they have free time in their schedule,” Cherry said. CCBDD programs run twice a week and will also be taking two field trips this semeter: bowling and mall shopping.
Another organization on campus, Rotaract, combines international and local service while promoting professional development for its members. Tayla Lindsay, a senior public health major and the president of Rotaract, loves the camaraderie and friendship that naturally form between members of the club.
“Service is very important to me and I believe in putting service above self,” Lindsay said. “The club is full of wonderful and friendly people that share the same values and beliefs.”
Events such as a silent auction fundraiser, a Halloween event for children, and hot chocolate giveaways are just some of the ways Rotaract gives back to Berea and beyond.
There are also plenty of ways to help out fellow students on campus too. To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA) is a national organization with a chapter here at Baldwin Wallace, with the mission of spreading love, awareness, and hope to those considering suicide or suffering from other issues.
Mandi Durma, the Director of Communications for TWLOHA-BW, has been aware of the non-profit for years and was ecstatic when it opened a chapter at BW. “People need other people, and we are reminded of that at every meeting,” said Durma.
The club’s weekly meetings allow members to bond while planning activities to spread some love to non-members on campus. “We get to build a community of hope… and let peers know that they are loved and that their story is important.”
Finally, for those particularly adventurous students, there is always the Alternative Break option. Alternative Break gives students the opportunity to travel to new places while giving back and making memories that will last a lifetime.
While you may be giving up holiday time with friends and family, you will be giving it to those that really need you, while gaining amazing experience in the meantime.
Tyesha Hayden, a Student Co-Director of Alternative Break, has joined the ranks of these selfless Baldwin Wallace students and continues to give back again and again.
“My passion for both service and travel has been amplified through the Office of Community Outreach and I have been able to go do service in amazing places, including the Dominican Republic,” Hayden said.
There will be seven trips this school year heading to seven different US cities, including Chicago, Detroit, and Miami.
Alternative Break offers a chance to see the world while helping others and gaining real-world experience, a trifecta of benefits for any student.
These are only some of the fantastic organizations and events that allow BW students to give back. There is a type of service out there for everyone, so try something new this semester and serve.