Summer Core Service Planning
It is the season when many of our students are planning summer Core Projects. Over 350 students participate in Core Projects during any given summer.Core Projects are intended to challenge SI students to engage with social justice through direct, on-going service within communities that have been underserved in our society. We ask that students make a commitment of at least 40 hours to the same nonprofit organization and that students organize their own project plan in advance.
All Core Projects require approval by SI Community Service staff. Once approved, students receive their reflection component: an Ignatian-based discernment process that accompanies the service action. Please keep in mind that our Core Projects combine activity and contemplation—both service and reflection are required experiences of Core Projects.
Students complete their service requirement (and Core Project) at various points in their SI school experience which provides great flexibility, but can also be confusing as no two students are exactly the same. What follows is a brief summary of where your student may be and how you can encourage him/her:
Students who are still striving to plan and finish a Core Project must make this graduation requirement a top priority this summer. SI’s service requirement is due the day seniors come to campus to register for classes. Rising seniors must receive approval of their Core Project before the summer begins. This is important as students need to connect with Community Service staff. As well, students should receive their reflection journal before beginning a Core Project. Information on our website is available to assist students; However, we strongly encourage and invite students to come to our office in person. Please know that in the last two months, Community Service has been very proactive in reaching out to to every rising senior needing, providing them with information and resources to complete his/her requirement.
Most students decide to do their Core Projects as rising juniors. This is the perfect time to experience justice in action! These students should be working on their plan now and should aim to submit their projects to Community Service by the last day of school. If a rising junior student misses this deadline, there are some opportunities in the summer to still meet with CS staff. Students should work directly with CS staff to organize their time so that they can come, in person, to our Summer Office Hours. Summer Office Hours will be posted on the Christian Service website beginning in May.
Volunteering over the summer is a great option for rising sophomores. In fact, Community Service has found that rising sophomores can have an excellent summer by just volunteering with nonprofit organizations (for regular support hours). This can be one of the best summer experiences for rising sophomores and is a fantastic way to start to develop an interest in social justice. A good rule of thumb is to have your student involved in about 30-45 hours of regular service. In this way, rising sophomores begin to learn what issues touch their heart and start to understand the reasons behind our graduation requirement. *There is no need to be worried about finishing the Core Service Project aspect of the requirement so soon in your time at SI. In fact, we hope our academic curriculum can support a more intentional and discerned process for uncovering your passion for service. Your Sophomore Religion Class will introduce the Core Service Project to you.