New students put feet to faith during Volunteer Plunge

FOR RELEASE
2004-08-26
Huntington, Ind.—It’s that time of year. Yesterday’s high school graduates, most celebrating the biggest milestone in their young lives, arrive at the front doors to their future. Several of these individuals will call Huntington College home starting on Friday, August 27, when they bid farewell to loved ones and embark on a new journey. The journey will take an immediate step into the College mission to “impact the world for Christ” as new students, faculty and staff will step into the Huntington community to lend a helping hand.

On Saturday, August 28, close to 300 individuals will spread throughout the community for the 11th Annual Volunteer Plunge. Eighteen teams of freshmen and transfer students plan to participate in the Plunge, a part-day of community service held each year in conjunction with Huntington College's comprehensive, two-day, new-student orientation.

“By having the Volunteer Plunge, our students are shown that the school and the student body is – and needs to be – connected to the community,” said Dr. Norris Friesen, vice president and dean of the College. “This is an act of putting feet to our faith. The students also get to know each other and work together in an informal setting. This is what the Plunge is all about.”

The Plunge will take place on Saturday, from 1-3 p.m., and offers new students the opportunity to be oriented with the Huntington community and surrounding areas. Each worksite has been arranged by the Joe Mertz Center for Volunteer Service, which is located on the campus of Huntington College.

The various teams will help clean, paint, landscape, weed, and work on various outdoor and indoor projects. Volunteers will help in places such as Forks of the Wabash, American Red Cross, Habitat for Humanity, Dan Quayle Center, YMCA, Youth Services Bureau, Kids’ Kampus, Pathfinders Roanoke Group Home, Lincoln Elementary School, Northwest Elementary School, Lancaster Elementary School, Horace Mann Elementary School, Riverview Middle School, Eastbrook Ranch, Huntington Headstart, and Love, Inc.

Founded in 1992, the Joe Mertz Center for Volunteer Service has become an integral part of Huntington College campus life. Each year, the Joe Mertz Center documents over 13,000 hours of volunteer service contributed by students, faculty and staff.

Huntington College’s Joe Mertz Center for Volunteer Service is a student-directed organization that mobilizes the campus community for Christian service. The Joe Mertz Center aims to involve students in the local community, instill a lifelong tendency toward service and promote the idea that one person can make a difference. The Joe Mertz Center has been listed as an exemplary program in the John Templeton Foundation Honor Roll of Character-Building Colleges.
 
Huntington College is a comprehensive Christian college of the liberal arts offering graduate and undergraduate programs in more than 70 academic concentrations. U.S.News & World Report ranks Huntington among the top comprehensive colleges in the Midwest. Founded in 1897 by the Church of the United Brethren in Christ, Huntington College is located on a contemporary, lakeside campus in Huntington, Indiana. The College is a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) and was named one of the 50 best Christian places to work by Christianity Today magazine.
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Ashley C. Smith
Associate Director for Media Relations
260.359.4171
Joanne Green
Sports Information Director
260.359.4284