NEWS

Mount students, professors embrace service

August 06, 2019
NEWBURGH, N.Y. -

Peter Witkowsky, associate professor of English and chair of Arts and Letters at Mount Saint Mary College, leads a poetry workshop at the Center for Hope on Broadway in Newburgh, N.Y.

Peter Witkowsky, associate professor of English and chair of Arts and Letters at Mount Saint Mary College, leads a poetry workshop at the Center for Hope on Broadway in Newburgh, N.Y.

The students, professors, and staff of Mount Saint Mary College are always finding new ways to serve their community.
 
Peter Witkowsky, associate professor of English and chair of the Division of Arts and Letters, and nine of his students recently hosted a poetry workshop for several young scholars at the Center for Hope on Broadway in Newburgh. The Mount cohort helped the students to write their own poetry and taught them innovative literacy techniques.
 
The recent course “The Art of the Essay,” taught by Rob Wakeman, assistant professor of English, was focused on the history of food writing. Throughout the semester, Wakeman and his class volunteered with the Newburgh Urban Farm & Food Initiative, which runs the community garden in Downing Park. They also aided at the Urban Farming Fair, a free outdoor event that celebrated gardening in the city. Attendees had the opportunity to engage in seed planting projects, learn about composting, and join in more environmentally friendly activities.
 
The students of Kate Burmon, assistant professor of Criminology, recently partnered with Regional Economic Community Action Program, Inc. (RECAP), a local anti-poverty agency. Guest speakers from RECAP spoke in Burmon’s classes, and students completed five hours of community service apiece with RECAP on their own time.
 
It’s all in a day’s work for the Mount, which has been steeped in a culture of service since its inception 60 years ago. Mount students volunteer at places like the Newburgh Armory Unity Center, San Miguel Academy, Nora Cronin Presentation Academy, the Food Bank of the Hudson Valley, and through many other activities. The college’s alumni also have a long and distinguished history of serving their communities in their careers and volunteer work.
 
Dr. Jason N. Adsit, president of the Mount, is proud of the college’s comprehensive, institution-wide commitment to service-learning and community engagement.
 
“Mount Saint Mary College is going to become the most community service-oriented college in the United States,” Dr. Adsit said. “We are going to move into the future by embracing and amplifying the concept that is at our core: Service matters.”
 
He added, “This isn’t simply about volunteerism…It’s about using all of the unbelievable talent, skills, and ideas that our faculty, staff, and fabulous students have to positively impact Newburgh and beyond.”