Compelling Connections

Let's invest our time and energy into doing something good, together.


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International Poverty: A TRIPS Story

marisa.strothenkeSenior Marisa Strothenke isn’t afraid to admit that preparing for her trip to St. Lucia, West Indies was a little bit scary. Although Marisa has been a part of the TRIPS program at St. Norbert College since her sophomore year, participating in both the Poverty and Homelessness trip to Washington D.C. and the Affordable Housing trip to Little Rock, Arkansas, she wasn’t exactly sure what to expect this time around. She explains, “Trying to lead a group of students to a foreign country that you have never been to is really intimidating.”

Luckily for Marisa, she was able to find comfort in the  partner organization she was traveling with. She claims that Good News Project, who helped her prepare for the trip before her departure, treated her and her TRIPS group like family. “They were truly there for us,” she emphasizes. Marisa also credits her TRIPS group for being positive through all of the concerns they faced. She says, “They walked with me every step of the way and had my back through everything.”

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St. Norbert College Blood Drive

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With February’s on-campus blood drive right around the corner, plenty of students are signing up to save lives. Whether you are already planning on donating or are still on the fence about the whole idea, there are plenty of reasons to get involved.  I had the chance to speak with Katie Flesch, a junior at St. Norbert college and the student Blood Drive Coordinator through Health and Wellness about just how important donating blood is.

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MLK Day 2015

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During this year’s 6th annual MLK Day of service at St. Norbert College students and staff celebrated the life and work of Martin Luther King Jr. by taking time out of their day to promote civil rights, equality, and freedom. Some participants chose to  teach elementary school children in the De Pere area about Dr. King’s message of respecting others, while others spent the day serving various area agencies who are meeting important needs in our community. Students, staff and faculty also had the opportunity to participate in an advocacy program where they were able to write letters, send emails, and make phone calls to their elected officials at all levels. There was also an opportunity to attend an educational presentation on fair housing.

alexander.clemetsonI had the chance to speak with Alex Clemetson, a senior at St. Norbert College, about his role in helping staff members Mike Peckham and Dee Geurts-Bengtson coordinate the school event as well as his overall experience. Not only did Alex prepare the SNC Track & Field team for the day and act as their site leader, he also kicked off MLK Day with a speech which reflected on the views of the day and the community service work participants were about to engage in. When I spoke with Alex, he explained that his goal was “to enlighten younger generations on the topics of diversity and treating one another with respect no matter who the other person is or the background they come from.”

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Michels Hall Service Program

Still figuring out where to live on campus next semester? Choose to live in Michels Hall and you’ll have the opportunity to fully engage in the community through meaningful service. Watch the video below to see what current Michels Hall residents have to say about their experience.

The Michels Hall Service Program is a living-learning service opportunity available to students with at least sophomore status. Students apply in groups of eight with the intention of living together in Michels Hall and completing an academic year of service with a community organization in the Greater Green Bay area.

Applications are due Friday, February 13th.

For more information about living in Michels Hall click here.

For information about how you can get involved with other community service opportunities in the Green Bay area visit the Sturzl Center for Community Service and Learning.


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Post-Graduate Service: The Norbertine Volunteer Community

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With this year’s commencement just around the corner, it’s no surprise to hear everyone talking about their plans for after graduation. Don’t have your post-grad life figured out just yet? You’re not alone. Before you work yourself into a frenzy and go full-on panic mode, let’s talk about an option you might not have considered yet: post-graduate service. Earlier this year, I had the chance to visit the Norbertine Volunteer Community (NVC) and interview Rachel Muhs, a resident at the NVC, about her experience.

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Dance Marathon 2014: Why Do You Dance?

Written by Liz Groth

Last year, Dance Marathon made a huge splash on the St. Norbert College campus by raising $21,372 to donate to the local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital. The passion and dedication of both the dancers and the participants at the event was astonishing, but their hard work didn’t stop after last year’s event was over. Almost immediately, the members of St. Norbert’s Dance Marathon started putting together  this year’s event. The hours of planning, preparing, and fundraising paid off as the event proved to be a huge success with hundreds of students participating. In the span of one year, Dance Marathon increased the donations they received by 62%, earning $34,652 for Children’s Miracle Network. I had the opportunity to speak with two dedicated Dance Marathon members, Lydia Dorn and Mary Sobczak, about how Dance Marathon has impacted them and why they choose to dance for 13.1 hours each year.

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Make A Difference Day 2014

Make-A-Difference-Daylogo-version-3Written by Liz Groth

Every year, the Residence Hall Association provides students on campus with the opportunity to serve as part of Make A Difference Day, the largest national day of community service. The event, which has been sponsored by USA WEEKEND and Points of Light for over two decades, aims to connect people with opportunities to serve while increasing an overall sense of community. It might sound like a simple concept, but every year millions of volunteers come together to make a difference in the communities in which they live.

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