Since its induction at the beginning of the school year, the Center for Service and Global Citizenship, formerly the separate Global Studies, Community Service and Sustainability departments, has been involved in numerous projects on campus.
Director of Global Studies David Miller explained that the Center’s purpose is “to bring together three different programs that were competing for resources and student time, and connect them for efficiency while creating a more coherent and compelling narrative of what it means to be a global citizen in the 21st century.”
Mr. Miller cited the last line of Deerfield’s mission statement, to “[prepare] students for leadership in a rapidly changing world that requires global understanding environmental stewardship, and dedication to service,” as the basis of the Center’s foundation.
With this as the overarching goal, the Center has joined the three departments into one cohesive unit.
“Our focus this year has been laying the groundwork for a more integrated vision,” Mr. Miller continued. “It is something that takes time in a school. I think that next year we will have a little bit more coordination with our calendar in terms of what the arc of the whole year looks like. We will be moving to a new space in the Library that has been designed for what we are hoping to have, and we will have a more clear vision. We have been pretty quiet this year, with the faculty on our side figuring out how to work together to reach this.”
Science teacher and co-director of the Sustainability sector Ivory Hills highlighted several projects that the Center has been working on: “There have been ‘Student-facing’ and ‘Adult-facing initiatives.’ The ‘Student-facing initiatives’ were three projects [in the Sustainability division of the Center] that have been student led projects. The first project, which came to a successful conclusion, was the repurposing of hundreds of glass vases, left in the basements of dorms from birthday and Valentine’s flowers. Students donated them to the Salvation Army. The two other projects are titled ‘The Paper Project’ and the ‘Light Bulb Project,’ the first being an attempt to switch all paper on campus to recycled paper. The latter is an attempt to switch all light bulbs to LED bulbs given for free by the local utility company.”
According to Dr. Hills and Mr. Miller, future projects, such as field trips as well as alternative and independent studies, will also attempt to “expand learning opportunities, establish partnerships with local and international organizations and incorporate global, sustainability, inclusion and civic engagement issues in the classroom.”
Margaret McGraw ‘15, a member of the Center’s Community Service Board, reported, “With the new Center, the Community Service Board has continued its involvement in yearly projects such as Big Brothers, Big Sisters, Special Olympics, and Second Helpings. I am excited to see all of the great things the Board will achieve next year in collaboration with Sustainability and Global Studies.”