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TORNADO UNITES SC COMMUNITy Continued from page 7

As rebuilding goes on in the neighborhoods surrounding the College, students want to continue to have a presence in the community. “What is most amazing about this is that it was completely student led,” said Felisko. “our annual Humanics in Action Day is led by administrators, and it’s a great time. But this came entirely from the students.” Elvers commented that the actions of the students and alumni

“speaks not only to our engagement with the community, but also to the sense of belonging our students have with their neighbors.” Many students in particular, she said, were particularly concerned about the schools, children, and neighbors with whom they have interacted. “This is the place I call home,” said

Schupack. “When something like this happens, it affects you in a different way than in a place where you don’t have that strong connection. I’ve run an after school program at Elias Brookings School, and all I could think about was, ‘Are my kids okay? Are their families displaced?’” Burckhard felt that the volunteers

responded to something “much bigger than us. people were hurting out there. There was a general knowledge that people needed help. We were just the bridge for it.” Moving forward, Elvers is considering

including projects in this year’s Human- ics in Action Day that address tornado aftermath cleanup. She also views this as a valuable learning experience that can be used in the Humanics Seminar course, an elective for first-year students that annually attracts approximately 200 students.

According to Flynn, what the volunteers accomplished—both on campus and in the communities—was invaluable. “I am deeply


indebted to everyone for all of their efforts and for their continued assistance to the College,” he said. “Despite the challenges we faced as a community as we recovered from this natural disaster, together we worked diligently to reopen our beloved campus and to resume our mission of educating students in spirit, mind, and body for leadership in service to humanity. Disasters carry both devastation as well as remarkable stories of spirit and outreach that serve to remind us all that we are part of a much larger community. This is one of those inspiring stories.” Hilbert summarized the actions

of the volunteers in one word: pride. “This College means something to students. We went through one of the hardest times together,” he said. “We’re not going to live in the past. Moving forward, we’re still Springfield College. We will always have our traditions. And, we will always exist.” Springfield College also engaged in

a number of community outreach efforts, including partnering with ARAMARK food services to serve lunch to hundreds of neighborhood residents each day for several weeks. on June 21, the College offered a gathering place on campus and ice cream for children attending the Elias Brookings School. The school had been heavily damaged in the tornado, and the children had been reassigned to either the Rebecca Johnson School and Boland School. This gave them the opportunity to reunite as a group on the last day of school. And now, with the school year underway, the College

has leased to the city of Springfield—free of charge—land adjacent to the Brookings School for staff parking, because the former parking lot was unavailable following the tornado and subsequent installation of modular classrooms. 1

TRIANGLE 1 Vol . 83, No. 1

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