Students met representatives from 30 local and national organizations and build their professional network. Students were able to look for a job, internship or volunteer opportunity from the following organizations by sector. The event featured a number of nonprofit organizations, including: Arts by the People, Madison Area YMCA, Students2Science, Uncommon Schools, Clean Water Action, Great Swamp Watershed Association, Carrier Clinic, Madison Volunteer Ambulance Corp, Morristown Medical Center, VITAS Healthcare, Family Intervention Services, the Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey, Jersey Cares and Monarch Housing Associates, Inc.
On Monday January 15, Drew’s on-campus celebration of Dr. King began with a lecture by Dr. Traci C. West, the James W. Pearsall Professor of Christian Ethics and African American Studies. We will celebrate the stories of Civil Rights activists like Fannie Lou Hamer, Septima Clark, and Bayard Rustin whose contributions have been essential to civil rights victories since the 1960s. Dr. West’s lecture discussed narratives and action stories of Civil Rights activists whose contributions are not often mentioned, but whose life work left an indelible mark on the direction of the Civil Rights Movement.
On Tuesday January 16, students, faculty, and staff joined efforts in a Day of Service in Dr. King’s memory. The Center for Civic Engagement planned on and off campus service opportunities throughout the day to benefit Drew’s local communities. Off campus service projects included building affordable housing at Morris Habitat for Humanity, sorting donations at Market Street Mission Thrift Store and making ready to eat meals at the Community Food Bank of New Jersey.
On campus service projects were held in the Ehinger Student Center in the afternoon. Projects included assembling hygiene kits and school supply bags for hurricane relief efforts, knitting hats for the homeless, decorating pillow cases for school children, writing letters for Amnesty International, and creating valentines for senior citizens.
On October 12, Drew University Center for Civic Engagement and Monarch Housing Associates, Inc. hosted a public policy forum on the housing crisis at Drew University. Matthew Desmond, Pulitzer prize winning author of Evicted, and Senator Cory Booker led a discussion on eviction in the US and in the state of New Jersey. “Eviction is not just a condition of poverty, it’s a cause too,” Desmond said. “We can’t fix poverty without fixing housing. Without a stable shelter, everything falls apart. Shouldn’t access to affordable housing be part of what it means to be an American?” In New Jersey, one in every six tenants experience an eviction. It’s the second most common cause for homelessness in the state. “This is not a problem bigger than us in the country,” Booker said. “We have the capability to solve it.”
The Center for Civic Engagement in partnership with the Center for Internships and Career Development and the Office of Alumni & Parent Relations hosted the Civically Engaged Alumni Networking Event on November 1, 2017. This event was an opportunity for Drew University students in their junior and senior years to meet alumni who have continued to serve their communities in their professional or personal lives. Student feedback was overwhelmingly positive. One student said, “Thank you again for allowing me the incredible opportunity of attending the Civics Alumni Networking event yesterday evening. I had a fantastic time and made many outstanding connections. My experiences yesterday offered such an eye opening perspective to not only different networking skills, but also a different perspective of the professional world as a whole.”
FilmBoot24 is a Young Filmmakers Weekend Bootcamp & Film Festival. This program is a collaboration of community educators and artists that focuses on at-risk students. High school students from Orange, NJ, are matched in teams with Drew students, staff and faculty, along with professional writers, filmmakers and artists who will act as mentors. Each team has 24-hours to produce a short film, based on a theme assigned to them. Judges review submissions and select finalists which are presented at the film festival and screening.
Our office depends on the help of our work study students and volunteers. Thank you!