There are far more than 50. So consider this sampling representative of the many altruistic endeavors that Wilmington University’s staff, faculty and students and alumni undertake. To them, it’s all about paying it forward.
By Johanna Bishop, Adam Voyton, Doris Lauckner, Tasha Jackson, Stefanie Whitby, Katie Burke, Regina Allen-Sharpe, the College of Business team, Ashley Mundy, Tina Barksdale, Maria Hess Edited and compiled by Maria Hess and Tina Barksdale
Pi Gamma Mu students participate in the Polar Bear Plunge and raise funds for Special Olympics —more than $3,000 annually! Each year, Pi Gamma Mu students also perform volunteer service hours at various community locations.
The College of Technology is quite involved in the community and has held multiple events in conjunction with Microsoft to help kids and adults learn how to play and program games. The college also built a VR game for a local radio program’s “Campout for Hunger” event. This resulted in a Campbell’s Soup donation of 1,600 cans of food to the Philabundance food bank.
Men’s and Women’s soccer teams supported the 321foundation’s World Down Syndrome Day.
Wilmington University’s Administration of Human Services program prepares leaders to lead nonprofit community organizations.
WilmU faculty have been active in the community as members of the New Castle County Ethics Commission: as Court Appointed Special Advocate Coordinator in New Jersey and Delaware; with youth programs in various faith-based community groups; and with the American Red Cross.
The Pathway to Instructional Excellence serves as an open-source professional development curriculum with on-demand videos.
The College of Online and Experiential Learning staff volunteers often to support numerous social causes.
WilmU offered a Transition Assistance Plan for DuPont employees who suffered layoffs.
Many Behavioral Science majors take advantage of completing their internships at community organizations. This benefits the internship site (free labor), and students acquire transferable professional skills.
The Clinical Mental Health Counseling program provides a quality education led by dedicated mental health professionals and prepares students to be clinical mental health counselors working in various settings with diverse clients. Many graduates embrace counseling professions that benefit society.
WilmU supports diversity in STEM education by partnering with Delaware Department of Technology and Information as well as Microsoft to host DigiGirlz for middle school-aged girls.
Student-athletes have supported Academic Affairs Vice President Dr. Jim Wilson by participating in the Annual Kidney Foundation 5K run.
The men’s soccer team participated in the Townsend (Delaware) “I Love to Read Month.” The team also received the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control’s outstanding volunteer group award.
WilmU has sponsored 86 nonprofit organizations, including The Salvation Army, Delaware Hospice, Easter Seals, and Nemours Fund for Children’s Health, to name a few.
Student-athletic teams have participated in Adopt a Highway, Make A Wish, Military Appreciation, New Castle County Parks Clean Up, and have also supported local organizations. They have raised awareness for numerous causes at local games, including breast cancer awareness, juvenile diabetes research, domestic violence, National Girls & Women in Sports Day, Toys for Tots and Wilmington firefighters.
WilmU sends volunteers , often students, to the Ronald McDonald House to man phones and support its annual telethon, “Change the Luck of a Child.”
For the third year in a row, Wilmington University’s College of Social & Behavioral Sciences has raised human trafficking awareness in the community via its Human Trafficking Awareness Symposium. The Behavioral Science Advisory Board, consisting of community members and leaders, provides guidance on and awareness of trends in the professional sector.
Former WilmU student and Army veteran Mike Laureano was a successful donor for a 4-year-old girl via Be the Match, which he signed up for at the University. (WilmU students marketed and recruited potential donors at the campus event.) Only one out of 400 people are expected to be matches.
AVP of Student Affairs and Dean of Students Dr. Regina Allen-Sharpe volunteers with the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, where she mentors newly diagnosed patients.
WilmU’s Student Leadership program raised more than $1,000 for Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children to support its goal to fund research for childhood cancer.
Groups of WilmU students have traveled the country for their Alternative Spring Breaks to aid survivors of such disasters as Hurricane Sandy in New Jersey and Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans. Others have volunteered for Habitat for Humanity of New Castle County to build homes for deserving Wilmington families.
Stephanie Battis serves on the board of The Greater Valley Chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society.
The Student Alumni Association has raised funds for and participated in the Susan G. Komen Foundation’s “Race for the Cure.”
Alice Miller , coordinator of Student Activities, volunteered for Big Brother Big Sisters and met weekly with her little sister at her school. She provided academic support and engagement activities.
The Psychology/Organizational Dynamics Student Association participated in the National Association of Mental Illness walk.
Wilmington University’s Student Government Association assembled duffel bags for children entering foster care through the Kind to Kids Foundation. The group has also volunteered at Foulk Manor North (North Wilmington) and hosted activity days for its elderly residents.
A team from Wilmington University’s College of Health Professions embarked on a weeklong mission trip to Santo Domingo, the capital city of the Dominican Republic, where they delivered medical treatment to a population in need and help set up clinics.
WilmU students and staff contribute annually to the Joy of Sharing Toy Drive in partnership with CBS Philadelphia.
WilmU students and staff donate blood annually to the Blood Bank of Delmarva.
Student Leadership participants have developed and facilitated leadership workshops for middle and high school students for the Jefferson Awards Foundation Conferences.
The Student United Way organization at Wilmington University was awarded the Promising Practice Education Award for performing anti-bullying skits at Southern Elementary School. They also organized a Field Day for students from May B. Leasure Elementary School and painted a peace mural at Wilmington’s Kingswood Community Center to commemorate Martin Luther King Day.
WilmU’s Dover Ambassadors have volunteered at the Delaware Heart Ball, which is organized by the American Heart Association.
The College of Business partnered with the Salvation Army during the holiday season. They even worked Red Kettles and rang bells.
Dr. Kathy Kennedy-Ratajack and Stephanie Battis , both of the College of Business, assisted with the judging for Jobs for Delaware Graduates. The mission was to enable students to achieve academic, career, personal and social success.
Dr. Kennedy-Ratajack served as co-chair of the American Heart and Stroke Association’s Go Red for Women Event.
Representatives from the College of Business provided classroom volunteers for Junior Achievement, an organization that fosters work-readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy skills, and uses experiential learning to inspire students in our communities to dream big and reach their potential.
Assistant Professor Piyen Chang picks up litter for communities in Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
Associate Professor Dr. Robin Weinstein has worked tirelessly to engage, equip, empower and mobilize individuals and organizations in New Jersey, to employ innovative and cooperative solutions to alleviate suffering, to feed the hungry, end poverty, reduce crime, revitalize a spirited community and transform lives. He is the co-founder of the Cumberland County Code Blue Coalition and the convener of the Cumberland County Housing First Collaborative, which address the plight of homelessness through community engagement, grassroots activism, and innovative partnerships.
Senior Director Dr. Maria Hess has served the Ministry of Caring for many years and was awarded the 2018 Caring Bowl, the nonprofit’s highest award honoring individuals who have demonstrated consistent service to the poor and homeless. Dr. Hess also moderates for Great Dames, Inc., a nonprofit that supports women and inspires them to build their legacies.
The College of Technology team created a training module Proof of Concept for pediatric doctors from the Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital for Children.
WilmU’s award-winning WilmU cheerleaders give back big time. They collaborated with Admissions to develop a service program called “I Love to Read Program,” and partner with 12 local elementary schools. Their annual Community Walks/Runs support nonprofits and charitable initiatives, such as Purple Stride Delaware, Donor Dash, Light the Night Walk, Wilmington Kidney Walk, and the Annual Sea Witch Festival.
Dr. Katie Ellis , director of the WilmU’s Brandywine site, serves on the board for Nemours Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders. She was the former Woman of the Year for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, for which she raised $17,000 in 10 weeks. Dr. Ellis also co-chaired a Fresh Start Scholarship Foundation (FSSF) signature event that raised $40,000 for student scholarships. She currently mentors a WilmU scholar for FSSF.
The Student Government Association has cooked and served meals at Ronald McDonald House of Delaware, and volunteered by taking calls at its annual telethon. They also participated in the nonprofit’s Delaware Run for Kids.
The University Relations team volunteers annually at the Delaware Food Bank to assemble hundreds of food backpacks for children who might otherwise go hungry.
Student United Way , Student Government Association and the women’s lacrosse team joined forces to serve meals for the Sunday Breakfast Mission.
The Human Resources team developed a comprehensive training and development program called “Learn and Earn,” where they offer diversity workshops focused on cultural awareness, sensitivity and diversity for all levels of employees.
The University encourages its employees to be involved in the community and has implemented a “Community Connections” program so that employees can be awarded time off to participate.
Alumnus Georgetown Charles has dedicated his life to serving the people of his native Haiti, who to this day are still recovering from a devastating 2010 earthquake.
Associate Professor Dr. Kathryn Brown has volunteered for Read Aloud Delaware and worked with non-English speaking parents who wanted to build better futures for their children by improving their reading skills.
Many WilmU staffers volunteer at the Ministry of Caring’s Emmanuel Dining Room to serve meals to the homeless and hungry.