Day of Service October 2020

Giving back to communities supporting Inver Hills and DCTC missions for 50 years

Inver Hills Community College and Dakota County Technical College partnered to host the second-annual Day of Service Friday, October 9, 2020. The volunteer event brought together students, faculty, staff, administrators, alumni and community members for the purpose of giving back to area communities that have supported the missions of both colleges for 50 years.

Starting at 8 a.m., Day of Service activities took place throughout the day and included several virtual sites and a midday celebration via Zoom. Indoor and outdoor projects were available on both campuses as well in the community at large. Opportunities were offered for people with different physical abilities. All projects followed appropriate social-distancing protocols; mask use was required.

Examples of service projects included:

  • Packing food at Feed My Starving Children
  • Making cards for military service members
  • Yard clean up with Laura Baker Services
  • Helping with a poetry project for the Minnesota Prison Writers’ Workshop
  • Fall crafts for residents at Timber Hills Presbyterian Homes
  • Park clean up at Rock Island Swing Bridge Park

The Day of Service was planned by a committee of staff, faculty and alumni, including Shannon Williams, Inver Hills community-based learning coordinator, Amy Eppen, DCTC Foundation development director, and Emily Johnson, Inver Hills director of career development.

Emily was pleased to report the colleges worked in concert to plan the event.

“We had more than 125 volunteers at multiple worksites throughout our communities,” Emily said. “We are so happy that the joint 50th Anniversary allowed us to bring back a campus tradition and expand the event to invite our friends and colleagues from DCTC along with our students, alumni and community members. Our local community gives so much to the colleges and our students. This is an important event to say thank you for their support. We are excited to know that this event will continue to grow and expand in future years.”

“President Michael Berndt and cabinet have been very supportive of this event, and participants continue to share that they want the Day of Service to become a tradition. We were thrilled to have community members participate with greater interest from our students as well.”
Amy Eppen
DCTC Foundation Development Director
Dakota County Technical College

“Thank you for providing us this opportunity. And thank you for all the good DCTC/IHCC provide our communities. Let’s make this an annual tradition.”
Morris Allen
Senior Community Liaison
U.S. Representative Angie Craig, Minnesota 2nd Congressional District

“We all had a great time! Service-learning has so many benefits—thank you for spearheading this. Count me in for next year.”
Brett Kolles
English Faculty
Dakota County Technical College

Shannon Williams reported that the Day of Service has been a great way to build community, especially in the fall of 2020 when people are craving ways to connect and make a difference during the pandemic.

“While I work with community-based learning [CBL] all year, I appreciate this unique way to get folks engaged with our community partners, particularly when they may not have the time to make an ongoing volunteer commitment, or haven’t taken a CBL class,” said Shannon, who will be leading Day of Service planning next year. “I find that many folks want to volunteer, but don’t have the time. My hope is that our Day of Service provides an easy way to not only give back, but also meet new people and have fun.”

Volunteer leader perspectives

“I was at Art Works in Eagan, and the people that volunteered were very impressed with the facility and the fact that it is volunteer-led. One student even bought three pieces of art from the current exhibit! They are interested in learning more about upcoming exhibits and how they can volunteer. Big win!”
“This has become my favorite event! Laura Baker Services was a great partner. Can’t wait for next year.”
“We all had a great time! Service-learning has so many benefits.”
“We had a great time figuring out all of the things that we found doing riverfront cleanup: boots, ropes, construction equipment, hunting supplies and more. One never knows what will be washed down the river from up north!”

Day of Service 2020 gallery

View more event photos at Day of Service 2020 on Inver Hills Flickr:

Learn more about the Day of Service at Inver Hills and DCTC by contacting:

Emily Johnson
Director of Career Development

Shannon Williams
Community-Based Learning Coordinator

Amy Eppen
Foundation Development Director

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