First-year and transfer students put the Concordia mission into action as they volunteered across the F-M community.
Emily Honl ’17, Fargo, N.D., spent her first morning as a Concordia student off campus, living out the college’s mission.
She and members of her Orientation club organized warehouse supplies at HERO, Healthcare Equipment Recycling Organization, as part of the annual Hands for Change program.
“I’m really glad that we got to step away from Concordia and come work for a bigger cause,” Honl says.
First-year and transfer students completed 40 different service projects in the Fargo-Moorhead community on Aug. 26. By doing so, they continued a tradition that has spanned two decades. Since Hands for Change started, more than 32,000 hands have volunteered by pulling weeds, painting buildings, mowing lawns, playing games, cleaning offices and everything in between.
Hands for Change began as a pilot program for a few Orientation clubs in 1993. It became a full-fledged event the following year.
Chelle Lyons Hanson, director of Student Leadership and Service, believes that Hands for Change, and the subsequent reflection, helps bring the college mission to life for incoming students.
“Participating in the Fargo-Moorhead community through Hands for Change gives students a clear connection to the mission – and the mission in action,” she says.
For Hands for Change coordinator Moriah Nelson ’14, Stephen, Minn., it’s all about the bigger picture.
“If students have a positive experience with Hands for Change, it can open the door to a lifestyle of service-learning,” Nelson says.
The activity also prepares students for what will become a focus throughout their four years on campus.
“Becoming a Cobber also means becoming responsibly engaged in the world and Hands for Change gives students that opportunity right off the bat,” says Orientation leader Erin Evans ’14, Gaylord, Minn. “I think it’s really cool that we can help make the world a better place just by being a student.”