Service is interwoven into the Carolina experience. So much so that over three days before classes even start, 80 students – 62 first-year students and 18 student leaders – have already given more than 500 hours of service working with 13 organizations in the Chapel Hill – Carrboro community.
Through APPLES Service-Learning Initiative (SLI), a unique student-led introduction to service-learning and the local Chapel Hill-Carrboro community, incoming first-year and transfer students learn about and work with APPLES community partners, become more aware of local social justice issues, form lasting friendships with other engaged students and are introduced to reflection as a tool for making meaning out of service experiences.
“SLI isn’t just learning about public service at Carolina. It’s a deep dive into what service-learning means and the start of a community that stays with you throughout your time at UNC,” said Andrew McKinnon ’20, a computer science major from Greenville, North Carolina. “This year, 62 incoming first-years served with 13 local community organizations, many of which were sustainable APPLES community partnerships.”
SLI participants worked on service projects related to organization, beautification and local advocacy topics. Students also spent time preparing for and facilitating summer camp activities at Kidzu Children’s Museum, delivered meals with TABLE and Meals on Wheels, completed landscaping projects with Wildwoods Farm and assisted teachers with setting up classrooms at McDougle Middle and Elementary Schools. Through their work, participants and their fellow student leaders fostered a lasting impact with community partners in the Chapel Hill- Carrboro area.