Bethany Student Service Fellows Connect Classrooms and Community
Service Learning Center Announces 2012-2013 Appointees

BETHANY, W.Va. — The Service Learning Center at Bethany College announces the appointment of students Annie Grogan and Bethany Mullins as 2012-2013 Service Fellows. Grogan and Mullins will help lead a variety of service learning initiatives designed to bridge classrooms and community through meaningful interaction with the needs of the region.

Supported by a grant from the PNC Foundation, Bethany’s Service Learning Center was established to help students combine community service with their own educational experiences in order to teach civic responsibility and promote a greater understanding of the community.

“We are very pleased with this year's choice of Service Fellows and expect that year three of the Service Learning Center will be as productive as years one and two,” said Katherine Shelek-Furbee, professor of social work, program director and chair of the Department of Social Work. “Annie and Bethany have complementary skills and will provide a strong model for teamwork for those leading our service projects next year.”

Grogan is a religious studies major from Kailua, Hawaii, and will be a senior during the upcoming academic year. “Annie brings a wealth of community service experience, an easy-going manner and an open-minded approach to work with others that sets an example for others to follow,” Furbee said.

Mullins, who will also be a senior during her term as a Service Fellow, is from Evanston, Ill., and is majoring in English. Furbee noted, “I have worked with Bethany for the past three years in the Kalon Scholar Service Leader Program. She has excellent organizational skills and a true service orientation.”
 
According to Furbee, the primary responsibility of Service Fellows is to act as a liaison, working with students, faculty and community agency representatives interested in developing a service or service learning project. Fellows assist as needed with all phases of development and implementation, receiving requests and recruiting volunteers. They also have the opportunity to develop their own service projects.

Fellows also visit community organizations and present on the value of service and service learning in developing leadership skills. Grogan and Amy VanHorn, who works with the College’s career counseling and placement services, recently addressed such topics at a Belmont County Schools event in April. 

This year's Fellows completed a Global Youth Awareness Day grant and sponsored an Earth Day event for local elementary school children.

Projects for the next academic year include the planning and organization of an Agency Service Fair in September and a Service Recognition Event in April. Fellows will also host a fall luncheon for new faculty. Additional projects will be planned according to requests from faculty and community agencies.

Service Fellows are nominated by faculty and current Service Fellows. Candidates must possess a 3.0 or higher GPA and are required to submit one recommendation from a faculty member or other professional reference, as well as one from a peer. Nominees also provide a resume with evidence of community service and complete an application package that requires an essay addressing reasons the candidate believes they should be awarded the position.

Bethany College is a small college of national distinction located on a picturesque and historic 1,300-acre campus in the Northern Panhandle of West Virginia. Founded in 1840, Bethany is the state’s oldest private college.