How Deacs Can Make A Difference

by: Miranda Wells | Wake Forest ’22

Welcome home, Deacs!

It’s hard to believe that summer has come to an end and we’re already one week into the fall semester. Another exciting, busy year is ahead of us and there is so much to look forward to. In my second year at Wake Forest; I’ve had the opportunity to reflect on my expectations of campus as a prospective student, freshman, and now an official upperclassmen.

When I think back to my campus tour, I distinctly remember the emphasis placed on service throughout your time at Wake Forest. At the time I thought, “That’s cute, but there’s no way students have the time to volunteer. This is Wake…”

That all changed once I was here. I began to hear more about the opportunities to serve not only on campus, but in our community. To my surprise they sounded not only interesting, but fun.

As the semester went on, I was skeptical that I could find the time I needed for studying, let alone service. However, I eventually found that it’s not only possible to serve, it’s fulfilling to be a part of these programs. Not to mention, a genuine part of the Wake Forest experience.

While I am sure you keep hearing about service, you may ask yourself: what does that mean exactly? How can I get involved?

Well, let me introduce you to the Office of Civic & Community Engagement, which exists to help Wake Forest students, faculty, and staff find opportunities to contribute to both our on-campus and greater Winston-Salem community. It provides a variety of different programs and events, so you can find opportunities to fit both your schedule and interests. Whether it’s health and nutrition, social justice issues, education equity, leadership, or civic engagement there’s something for you.

A resource for our Wake Forest family, the office allows you to connect and grow in the spirit of pro humanitate, our university motto.

Each of these opportunities creates a great impact on our campus and in our community. They even create great memories as you spend your time at Wake Forest. So if you’re like me, and a little skeptical about where to start, don’t wait. I encourage you to take advantage of the opportunities available to you, and to get involved.

If you are looking to be a part of something that’s both fulfilling and fun throughout your time on campus, here are some programs from the Office of Civic & Community Engagement to keep in mind.

Year Round Opportunities:

  • Campus Kitchen: Help to eliminate food waste and food insecurity in Winston-Salem by signing up for a volunteer shift. Repackage unused food, pick up produce from a local grocery store, or make deliveries in the community.
  • Kids Cooking Coalition: Connect with kids in the community by teaching cooking skills and healthy eating habits.
  • Dash Corps: Partner with different organizations in Winston-Salem while learning about civic identity, social action, and how to make positive change in our local community.
  • Social Justice Incubator: Foster discussion and action on social justice issues with a group of students.
  • Brian Piccolo Foundation: Participate in signature programs like Hit The Bricks, Wake N’ Shake, or Pump Up for Piccolo to help support cancer research in honor of former Deacon and football star, Brian Piccolo.

Upcoming events throughout the fall semester:

  • Sept. 26, Hit the Bricks: Join faculty, staff, students, and alumni as they run/walk laps around the upper quad to show their solidarity as Wake Nation in the fight against cancer.
  • Oct. 10-13, BRANCHES Social Justice Retreat: A student led retreat focused on dialogue, community-building, and social change.
  • Oct. 30, Project Pumpkin: A student-led fall-festival, featuring faculty and staff, which prepares activities and games for local children and provides a safe environment for trick-or-treating.
  • Nov. 16-25, Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week: Throughout the week Campus Kitchen features guest speakers and special events like Turkeypalooza to provide students, faculty, and staff an opportunity to engage in action and reflection around hunger and homelessness in the community.

What to look out for in the Spring: