As we transition to a new year fully online, there have been many changes made to the various programs at school. This includes a new interim Upper School Service Learning Coordinator: Ms. Devine, the Associate Director of Global Programs. She will be filling in for Ms. Zinda for the first semester of the school year. When asked about her new position, Ms. Devine replied “Ms. Zinda leaves big shoes to fill! I’ll do my best to serve students and uphold the principles of the service learning program. Students can reach out to me any time with questions or concerns and I will work with you until we get it resolved!” While this change may seem to add more confusion to the mix, Ms. Devine is a great resource for all things community service.
As for the Community Service program itself, not much has changed in the time of COVID-19. Actually, Ms. Devine hopes that “service becomes even more integrated into all aspects of our school! I’d love to see more classes include service components.” So while the requirements for the class of 2020 were adjusted to make sure that everyone could graduate, the vast possibilities of remote service ensure that the eighty hours are still a minimum requirement. Ms. Devine lists many potential avenues for service, highlighting what students have recently done: sewing masks, making 3-D printed face shields, knitting blankets for the homeless, helping Hmong flower growers sell their flowers despite markets being closed, transcribing historical archives, and tutoring youth online. The changes in our world today do not have to impact the service that Lakeside students can do for the community.
There are many resources available online that students can use to find service, including x2vol and the Service page on Lakeside Blended Learning (also known as Haiku). Students can also submit forms to Ms. Devine to approve new forms of service. Not only that, but Ms. Devine assures that “students can reach out to me any time with questions or concerns and I will work with you until we get it resolved!” While many things have changed, the goals and execution of service at Lakeside can be a stress-free and rewarding process.