Community Service Day: A Huge Success
by The Milton Measure on Friday, May 17th, 2013
Every year, Milton Academy takes a day off from classes to take part in either Community Service or Seminar Day. This year, on May 1st, Milton’s Upper School joined together to participate in giving back through community service around the greater Boston area.
Members of the student body were assigned different tasks in order to get further in touch with Milton’s neighboring communities and offer help to those in need. Students dispersed to various locations to impact their designated communities.
Some Milton students traveled to elderly homes, food banks, or preschools delving into various activities to offer their support. Others stayed on campus to teach science, play music, and connect with students from the Epiphany School. All these tasks accumulatively made a great impact on both Milton students and the destination communities. Sydney Adedemola (II), who sang and played the violin for the Epiphany students, recalls a particularly memorable moment when the students sang along in “a pure moment of music, bringing everyone together.” From this experience, Sydney sees how sharing music becomes a service to others no matter how small.” This day, just one song, one act of kindness, illustrates to the students the impact they can make on the community.
Last year, Milton hosted Seminar Day, which was filled with interesting talks that enlightened Milton Students about a broad spectrum of issues and ideas. Next year we will host Seminar Day again, following the biannual fashion of alternating between these two days. For many years, the days present a pertinent Milton Academy tradition, helping students understand what goes on in the world beyond the boundaries of the Milton campus.
Students enjoy both Seminar Day and Community Service Day for different reasons. Erika Lamere (III) who, this year, visited the Bridge Boston School to help teach, plant flowers, and play with the kids explains that she prefers community service because it is “more fun and you feel good when the day is over.” Gianna Beniers (III) who assisted at the Boston Food Bank agrees with Lamere that community service day is “fun” and “more hands-on” than Seminar Day. An anonymous senior girl referred to Community Service Day as an opportunity to expand beyond the “Milton Bubble.” She explains, “Milton students will react better to being active instead
of just listening to things going on outside [the Milton Bubble].”
Even with all the positive feedback about Community Service Day, there are still many people who truly enjoy and actually prefer Seminar Day. Ian Kennedy (III) says that he likes being exposed to many different topics on Seminar Day rather than just learning about the one location through community service. Ian describes the individuals who come to speak to students as “super interesting.” Also in favor of Seminar Day, Bart Panarese (II) states, “I get to choose what I want to do and what interests me.” Bart says his desire to select what he learns stems from his “naturally curious” personality, a trait which many Milton students share. Panarese likes the elective system of Seminar Day because it allows him to learn things he wants to learn.
Students seem to generally agree that both of these days offer them the opportunity to learn about real world issues and expand their thinking beyond Milton Academy’s sometimes monotonous atmosphere. Milton students enjoy the chance to leave for the day or hear the stories and ideas of people on many different public issues that they otherwise would not have been exposed to in a classroom. This year, Milton Academy reached out and offered its help to the community, and next year, we will have the opportunity to hear from many amazing and intellectual individuals on topics such as the environment, politics, business, and more. The Milton Academy community embraces the tradition of these days, enthusiastic about learning in a non-traditional way.
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