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Concord Academy Students Contribute to Gulf Coast Rebuilding

The Boston Globe recently highlighted the work of Concord Academy students who spent a week working in the New Orleans renewal effort. This most recent trip included a larger group- 78- after the positive experiences of students on last year's trip to Kiln, MS.

Writing from north Mississippi and as an experienced New England boarding school student and faculty member, it's great to see this kind of outreach. I know how difficult it can be to get outside of a boarding school routine in order to gain experience and perspective. It's heartening to see and hear students move beyond their comfort zones. Community service is much easier when you set aside time as part of your school schedule.

Beyond their contributions to the coast, the students gain personally:

William Taylor, a junior from Brookline, is among the students who have signed up for a second turn because, he says, the first trip was so rewarding.

"It felt really good to help people," Taylor said. "When I'm in school, it's sometimes difficult to devote a lot of time to service. But I feel it's important, given some of the privilege I come from."

Citizenship requires effort and sacrifice; it's heartening to read about this groups willingness to go out and get their hands dirty. Making the commitment to use one's free time and energy demonstrates a high level of maturity. It's also important to see and learn about America- the differences and the ties that bind us.

Update: The folks at Concord were kind enough to turn us onto an article about the trip that they posted on their site. After giving it a read I discovered that they kept a blog to document their work. Both are well worth checking out.


Great example of how education can stretch beyond the classroom and the campus. Ten years from now they won't remember calculus formulas, but this trip to New Orleans, and the good work they will do, will stay with them for a lifetime.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Brian Fisher published on June 12, 2008 6:51 PM.

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