Service-Learning Initiative connects first-years with Carolina community

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The initial few days on campus for first-year students can be overwhelming, making it difficult to connect to the larger university community. Immersing students in public service to ease that transition is what the Service-Learning Initiative (SLI) is all about. Rani Reddy ‘15 says that participating in SLI helped her find her way and become more involved with service at Carolina.

“[SLI] was meaningful to me because I appreciated being with a group of incoming first-year students who were as interested in service as I was,” said Reddy. Meeting new friends and making community connections was so important to Reddy that the following year she took her involvement a step further, becoming an SLI site-leader and serving as a co-leader for SLI’s alternative fall break experience.

healthy girlsReddy’s work with SLI allowed her to expand her leadership skills and led her to better understand the importance of UNC’s connection with the local nonprofit community. Learning that early was key, allowing her to give back to the community and helping her get the most out of her UNC experience.

“My favorite part about working with APPLES Service-Learning Initiative was being able to take a leadership role in planning the fall break experience and developing a close relationship with my co-leader. I like that I can give back to an organization that has helped me gain a better footing
on UNC’s large campus.”

~ Rani Reddy, Service-Learning Initiative site leader