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IUPUI creates new community service project for first-time students


INDIANAPOLIS — Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis has a national reputation as the place where community service/civic engagement matters and experiences for first-time students set the stage for campus involvement leading to student success.

A new campus event combines these two campus priorities.

This weekend, the IUPUI Office of Student Involvement will sponsor an event designed to give first-time students an early initiation to the campus tradition of giving back to the community.

The first annual iServe Day of Service will take place from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 24. Almost 300 first-time IUPUI students are expected to perform volunteer duties for 12 community partners.

Students will be assigned by major to 18 different locations where they will use their skills and network in the professional environments representative of their academic majors.

“Community service and civic engagement is a tradition of IUPUI,” said Jarod Wilson, coordinator for community service and civic involvement. “The goal of iServe Day is to connect first-time students with a community partner with whom they can start out learning how they, as volunteers, can use the skill sets from their majors and prospective professions now and after graduation

Most of the volunteer work sites are located near the IUPUI campus. Working in proximity to campus allows the students to experience the community surrounding their urban campus and encourages future involvement at the sites, Wilson said.

“The tendency is for students to get stuck in the campus bubble. We want to get them involved in the community outside the campus,” Wilson said.

Service projects include preparing meals for the homeless at Wheeler Mission, working on a walking trail at Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet High School and clean-up and mural beautification projects in the Ransom Place neighborhood.

On-site registration for iServe Day takes place from 9 to 10 a.m. in the Joseph Taylor Courtyard, 815 W. Michigan St. The students will work for about three hours before spending the remaining time being mentored at the sites.

The Office of Student Involvement coordinators 42 volunteer events on the IUPUI campus, including the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service in January and the annual Day of Caring in September.

Campus co-sponsors of iServe Day of Service are the Office of Housing and Residence Life, The Residence Based Learning Communities, and Fraternity/Sorority Life.

Media who want to schedule interviews at the work sites can contact Diane Brown, 317-274-2195; 317-371-0437; or

Work sites are:

  • Haughville Public Library, cleaning and organization, 2121 W. Michigan St.
  • Central Library, cleaning and organizing, 40 E. St. Clair St.
  • Holy Family Shelter, housekeeping, 907 N. Holmes Ave.
  • Ronald McDonald House, housekeeping, 435 Limestone St.
  • Near West Collaborative/Hawthorne Center, mural paintings over graffiti, 2440 W. Ohio St.
  • Ransom Place Neighborhood Association, beautification and clean-up, meet at the window sculpture on the corner of Paca, Indiana and St. Clair
  • Crispus Attucks Medical Magnet High School, maintenance of the walking track and clean-up, 1140 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St.
  • Wheeler Mission, serving food for the clients at the shelter, 245 N. Delaware St.
  • Friends of the White River, river clean-up near Park Place hotel
  • Near North Development Corp., park clean-up, 24th Street, Highland Avenue and Fall Creek Parkway
  • Dig IN, setup for the festival, Military Park
  • Avondale YMCA, running the kick-off for the opening, registration, check-in, etc., 38th and Rural streets