Celebrating the Life and Legacy of Dr. King


Posted on January 19, 2016 by Joy Washington
Joy Washington


USA African American Student Association members teamed up to bake cakes and cupcakes and organize toys for ill and injured children and their families at Ronald McDonald House. AASA President DeWitt Ford, marketing major, far right, vounteers with Service Chair Carl Thomas, marketing major, and other members of AASA. data-lightbox='featured'
USA African American Student Association members teamed up to bake cakes and cupcakes and organize toys for ill and injured children and their families at Ronald McDonald House as part of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service. AASA President DeWitt Ford, marketing major, far right, helps in the kitchen with Service Chair Carl Thomas, marketing major, and other volunteers. Bottom photo: Bobbi Vaughn Kidd, food nutritionist at Dumas Wesley Community Center, sorts clothing items with Reed Miller, a pre-physical therapy major and presidential scholar.

About 200 University of South Alabama students, faculty and staff participated in Monday's national Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service to volunteer on several projects in Mobile and Prichard. Members of the USA community also walked in an annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day March.  

Each year, South Alabama unites with others to honor the memory and service of one of the great Civil Rights leaders by doing service projects that reflect King's commitment to service and social justice. 

“It’s important for us to support and serve our community on this special day,” said Kimberly Pettway, director of South’s Center for Academic Service-Learning and Civic Engagement. “The students came to work and give of their time to those in need.” 

This service project initiative is sponsored by the USA Center for Academic Service-Learning and Civic Engagement. South Alabama volunteers helped with numerous community activities including cleaning projects, organizing, sorting clothing, lawn and landscaping and washing of transport vehicles.

The USA Catholic Student Association cleaned apartments at Sybil H. Smith Family Village, a transitional housing program designed to serve families and women experiencing homelessness.

“I am passionate about social justice and helping people in need,” said Maria Longo, a nursing major from Huntsville, Ala. “I am so happy to be able to give back in this way.”

The African American Student Association organized toys and baked cakes and cupcakes for seriously ill and injured children, along with their families, at the Ronald McDonald House.

“We organized and baked some tasty treats,” noted AASA President DeWitt Ford, of Tampa, Fla., a marketing and pre-law major. “This was a memorable day for all of us who volunteered at Mobile’s Ronald McDonald House.”

Joni Hendee, marketing and communications coordinator for Dumas Wesley Community Center, said that having volunteers allows the staff to be able to spend more time on client services.

“We welcome volunteers and donations anytime,” Hendee said.  “Volunteers are important to our daily existence.”

Additional service projects were held at the Goodwill Recycling Center, SPCA, Little Sisters of the Poor, Africatown and Mount Zion Primitive Baptist Church.

For more information about upcoming service-learning opportunities, e-mail Kimberly Pettway at kpettway@southalabama.edu or visit the USA Center for Academic Service-Learning and Civic Engagement.

Bobbi Vaughn Kidd, food nutritionist at Dumas Wesley Community Center sorts clothing items with USA student Reed Morler, a pre-physical therapy major and presidential scholar.


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