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Want to Get Involved?

One program offers students a chance to talk about issues, the other provides an opportunity for freshman to serve.

Published: Monday, October 16, 2000

Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01

If you’re looking to get out of the so-called “BC Bubble,” two campus organizations are sponsoring activities this week that allow students an opportunity to get involved in the Boston community and voice and hear opinions about the world beyond.

Globalization and Inequality Series

Last summer a group of faculty members and students began discussing the problems of global inequality. It was found that faculty members tended to be more interested in discussing theory, while the students wanted to relate discussions of issues more to real life experience.

As a result of the conversations, the Globalization and Inequality series was founded with the help of students, faculty and participants from the Jesuit Institute, the PULSE Program and the Office of International Studies.

Six discussions on various global issues are expected to take place throughout the school year, the first one on Thursday, October 19, when Enrique Dussel, a professor at National Autonomous University in Mexico who is teaching at Harvard this semester, will speak on the ethical and moral challenges of globalization.

Dussel’s presentation will be followed by a general discussion, and then the audience will break into smaller groups for round-table conversation.

Sarah Reilly, A&S ’01, who has been involved in the planning of the discussions says, “The discussions will be a chance for students to share their views on some very relevant and controversial issues such as AIDS, human rights and the economy. Many students have opinions on issues because of first- hand experience abroad, something they have read or interest groups they may be involved in. Students can share their ideas and discuss solutions to the problems they have seen.”

Learning to Serve

While students will have the opportunity to discuss their opinions, starting this week, members of the freshman class will have the opportunity to volunteer in the Boston area through the UGBC sponsored program Learning to Serve.

Established in 1999 by Caitlin Murphy, A&S ’00, the program sent 35 freshman to volunteer in venues around Boston on five Saturdays during the spring semester last year. Each volunteer activity was followed by a speaker or presentation by peers, faculty or staff members along with a student-led reflection.

This year the program is looking to expand to 50 members of the freshman class and eight days of service, two to three hours each day. The list of service activities offers 10 different organizations, including Project Hope, The Little Brothers/Friends of the Elderly Program, The Action for Boston Community Help and the Lewis School. During the weeks when students are not volunteering they will engage in reflections and presentations for a night and be additionally advised by the 11 upperclassmen members of the Learning to Serve council.

One of the program’s co-directors, Amanda Jack, A&S ’02, says, “Clearly there is a desire to serve and a need for service. This program, in that it is limited to first year students, provides an alternative for students who are looking to connect with BC in some way during their first year. The nature of the programs allows for freshmen to find their footing and then participate in a second semester program.”

Sam Buchan, A&S ’01, also a co-director of Learning to Serve emphasizes the idea that the program incorporates the Boston community at large into a BC organization. “It’s taking the best of PULSE and 4Boston and bringing it together into one program specifically for freshmen, and it doesn’t start until the second semester, so you’re more settled in.”

Tables with information on Learning to Serve will be set up in freshmen dining halls today, and an information session will be held on Wednesday at 7 p.m. in Devlin 008.

Applications can be picked up there or in McElroy 123. Applications are due back by October 26, interviews will take place October 29 through November 2, and members will be notified in early November.

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