“During spring break 15 students and three staff personnel volunteered in Birmingham Alabama for the Habitat for Humanity College challenge,” Darren Achtzehn, Food Service Director for Aramark, at Seton Hill University, said.
“This was my first year attending one of their mission trips and it really made my perspective on life change,” said Jamie Pasquinelli, a sophomore Griffins @ Work Club member.
“Though the faces have changed the quality and performance have remained the same,” Achtzehn said, “We worked on 6 different proprieties doing things from installing doorknobs, hanging blinds and light fixtures, painting deck building, laying ceramic tile, digging post holes, working on vinyl siding installing curbside mailboxes to cleaning up a reclaimed property.”
“Our work days would be from about eight to three and would range from new builds to renovations.” Pasquinelli said.
“Each student had to pay 150 dollars to decrease the cost of insurance and other funds for the trip,” Pasquinelli said. Multiple fundraisers were created, including “Jail in Bail,” to help out the students going on the trip.
“After the work day, we would cook dinner, play board games, and interact with North Carolina State University, who was also living with us for the week,” Pasquinelli said, “We also did nightly reflections that brought us together as a group and helped us reflect our feelings on the day.”
The Griffin’s @ Work is a community service group that volunteers at the Food Bank, YWCA, as well as the Alabaster productions in Greensburg.
“It has since also expanded into a group that many can volunteer after their undergrad, the Alum GOLD has a group that went to New Orleans in 2013 and will have another group going to Durham NC the June,” Achtzehn said.
“I really enjoyed the trip as a whole. It helped me learn new skills that could be useful in the future,” said Pasquinelli, “It also helped me meet people who were passionate about helping others in a time of need. It really taught me to appreciate life and to never take anything for granted.” Pasquinelli said.
Pasquinelli said, “I personally think everyone should experience a trip like this once in their life because it can really help them find themselves and broaden their mind on what other societies are like in our world.”
“I always amazed at how Setonian [Seton Hill students] take such pride and with great respect take on tasks that they may have never done before and not only meet but exceed expectations,” Achtzehn said.