Community Outreach & Global Engagement
Care and compassion beyond campus
Lux et Veritas, or Light and Truth, is a guiding principle of WRA. For hundreds of years, the phrase has inspired Pioneers to live with courage and honesty because the words remind us there's a purpose bigger than ourselves.
In this spirit, Reserve's social mission comes to life. We serve communities, both neighboring and far, to better understand and know the world around us. And most significantly, we give our students the chance to steer this mission through our Service Leaders program, and we watch with pride and admiration as they take on the responsibility of planning, organizing and running a multitude of service projects.
By providing our students with every chance to lend a hand to others, we strengthen their resolve to make a difference. Learn more about our Family of Support.
This experience was memorable for me because not only did I help others but I had so much fun too! Seeing the smiling faces of the kids as they asked me what I did at the North Pole made my heart melt. I had a great experience and can't wait for my next service activity.
- Elba Heddesheimer ’23, Polar Express
Who are the WRA Service Leaders?
WRA's Service Leaders curate multiple opportunities for the WRA community to engage in service projects. With every fundraising event and service activity, you can expect the Service Leaders to educate their peers about this opportunity, explain what is needed and why it's so important to give back.
For these Service Leaders, volunteering is not just a pastime, it is an essential part of their lives. Their civic contributions often extend far beyond their Service Leader responsibilities and into personal pursuits, such as taking on the role of Red Cross Ambassador.
Each year, Service Leaders run several major school fundraisers, such as our fall Ghost Walk & Turkey Trot to benefit our Toys for Tots Drive, the Penny Wars for The Akron Canton Food Bank, World Book Day for The Cleveland Book Bank, and the annual May Color Run that benefits the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota, where select students travel for a service trip each summer.
They also make sure WRA's community service offerings are plentiful and robust, with opportunities sprinkled throughout the year. These can include special visits to Haven of Rest, ringing the kettle bell for the Salvation Army, and a festive trip to the Cuyahoga Valley Scenic Railroad's Polar Express trip to the North Pole -- where students dress up as Christmas Elves and bring holiday cheer!
They also make up the Interact Club of Hudson, working alongside the Hudson Rotary Club on district-wide projects.
The Service Leaders are led by the Officers, and this year, they've been given a special mission to create a long-term plan for the leadership group, establishing goals and committing to providing service to a designated group of recipients. This year, David King '22 and Jimena Oliva '22 are Co-Presidents, with Maddie Aliff '23 serving as interim Secretary and Annie Cui '22 as Interim Treasurer.
MEET WRA'S SERVICE LEADERS
Ava Palfi '24, Donald Heddesheimer '24, Kendall Krueger '24, Matt Hart '24, Mira Zamarro '24, Paige Dix '24, Sydney Davis '23, Annie Nguyen '23, Bingyi "Aaron" Chen '23, Brendan Gallagher '23, Ela Mody '23, Elba Heddesheimer '23, Gabrielle Hrivnak '23, Jeffrey Krapf '23, Jenny Williams '23, Landon Allis '23, Lucy Li '23, Maddie Aliff '23, Maggie Baker '23, Sheilla Muligande '23, Stella Lee '23, Vivian Zhou '23, Annie Cui '22, Daniel Li '22, Danielle Liu '22, David King '22, Ella Bump '22, Emily Brackin '22, Esme Cummins '22, Grace Jeon '22, Hannah Ma '22, Jakob Palfi '22, Jimena Oliva '22, Jin Lee '22, Kayla Jiang '22, Kennedy Schmid '22, Laila Hensley-Edelman '22, Lily Schultz '22, Michelle O'Connor '22, Natalie Ham '22, Sehee Renee Oh '22, Teliyah Davis '22, Zachary Hart '22 and Claire Lovas '22.
Everywhere we go -- we do our best to take pictures so that we can always remember the amazing experience!
RECENT ACTS OF SERVICE
Habitat for Humanity housing simulation, Salvation Army bell ringing and Chair-ITY volunteering.
In February, students raised $1,700 from Crush-O-Gram sales in support of DIPG childhood cancer research. To date, more than $14,000 has been raised and donated through the sale of Crush-O-Grams.++
On Sunday, May 2, 2021 WRA held its annual Color Run, raising $1,100 for Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota.
In 2021, the school's efforts raised $2,150 from Crush-O-Gram sales, which will go to Cleveland Clinic's breast cancer vaccine which is being researched and developed in The Tuohy Lab.++
WRA's Service Leaders received a special thank you from Honduras for sending funds for hurricane relief. By donating $150 to the organization Operación ETA, WRA provided a month's supply of food for 20 families, all purchased from local farmers, shops and small businesses.
WRA SERVICE // BY THE NUMBERS
The economic value of WRA community service hours in the 2021-2022 school year is over $34,848 so far!
In the 2019-2020 school year, WRA's Community Outreach program raised $60,880 through fundraising and donations.
The WRA community participated in 2,465 hours of service.
WRA supported 17 organizations, including the Akron-Canton Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, Haven of Rest, the Salvation Army and more.
Learn more about Community Outreach & Global Engagement
The Department of Community Outreach & Global Engagement advances the school's values of citizenship and regional and global engagement by providing educational and civic engagement opportunities in both our local and global communities.
Our focus is on embedding the value of community outreach into student lifestyles. This means encouraging students to find opportunities to work with organizations that fit with their personal values to gain a better understanding of why we serve.
Who is the recipient of WRA's service?Students regularly volunteer for organizations such as:
- The International Institute of Akron
- The Akron Canton Food Bank
- Haven Of Rest
- The Cuyahoga Valley National Park
- The Salvation Army
- Habitat for Humanity
- Case Barlow Farm Park
- Landing of Stow Assisted Living
- Big Brothers Big Sisters
- Cycles for Christ
- Creative Learning Center (Day Care Center)
I enjoyed my service experience. We prepared food for 500 people. It made me think how people in the dining hall work so hard to prepare breakfast, lunch, and dinner for us every day.
- Renee Oh ’22, Food Bank
Service Travel Opportunities
Our outreach trips provide students with the opportunity to engage in meaningful service in the context of cultural immersion. Students gain a global perspective as they witness the challenges facing the communities they serve.
While encountering another culture, students grapple with global complexities and their local implications: economic realities, social inequality and far-reaching ecological consequences.
Our service travel opportunities include: