November 1, 2016
By Emily Lapinski
Take some initiative, add in compassion, top it off with some caritas and veritas and that’s how you get Stars in Action.
Stars in Action (SIA) is a new club on campus developed by a couple of students at the end of the 2015-2016 school year, in response to the St. Baldrick’s Day event held at Dominican.
“I participated in St. Baldrick’s by helping plan the event as well as by shaving my head,” SIA Secretary Samantha Benner said. “It was an amazing feeling knowing that my gesture helped raise money for children going through the roughest time of their lives. It was all brought full circle when a fellow Dominican student thanked me for shaving my head. She is a cancer survivor and while she did not have cancer as a child, she still knew what it was like to go through it. That’s why we started the group. We want to give Dominican students an opportunity to volunteer and one that fits into a college schedule.”
The club is starting out its first year strong with over 40 members in place.
“I am so happy with the turnout so far,” said President Moira Kennedy. “After talking with Kate Schmidt at the Spring into Leadership Retreat last year, we saw that there was no club on campus that was focused on volunteering and that is really where Stars in Action came from. We are the Dominican Stars and we are in action by serving our community here at Dominican but also our local community. ”
This semester, SIA has worked with a student at Dominican named Juan Francisco by collecting spare change for people in Honduras as well as making care kits that for the homeless at Ministry’s Service in the Streets.
“We plan on working with the Hephzibah House, Love Your Melon, St. Baldrick’s, The Greater Chicago Food Depository and the Oak Park Food Pantry,” Kennedy said. “As far as on campus connections, we are working with Ministry, CAB, SGA, The Office of Student Involvement and Athletics.”
It is clear that SIA has some firm goals in place in order to truly make an impact.
Treasurer and Outreach Coordinator Matthias Witteman said, “We have set three goals for 2017: 500 service hours, 500 dollars raised for charities and helping 500 individuals in need. We have coined the phrase “the year of 500” and we hope to achieve the goals well before next fall. I am extremely proud of SIA thus far and I am really happy to be working with such a smart and fun group of people.”
If you are interested in joining SIA, you can email them at SIA@dom.edu and/or join the EngageDU page.
“I love this group because I think volunteer work is an important thing for everyone to do,” Benner said. “It can teach a person hard work, compassion and even put people’s views into perspective. I think that as individuals privileged enough to be able to be going to college, all of us should make more of an effort to change the life of someone who may not be as privileged as we are.”