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Chapman Students Give Back During National Philanthropy Month, we recognize the many ways CU students serve others.

Giving back is part of being a Panther. Each year, Chapman University students contribute approximately 100,000 hours of service through in-classroom and out-of-classroom efforts. Fifty different student organizations address issues such as health, poverty and political engagement on a local or global scale.

As the Chapman community celebrates National Philanthropy Month, here are just some of the ways Chapman students help others and learn something new in return.

Sharing Education

At the Friendly Center, Chapman students are regular volunteers, helping youngsters in kindergarten through middle school with everything from reading to mathematics and social studies. The University places about 20 work-study students as tutors at the Friendly Center each year.

Integrated educational studies major Alice Feng ’17 and second-grader Armando Sanchez share a laugh during a math facts flash card drill.

At Higher Ground Youth and Family Services , Chapman students gain critical classroom experience while leading after-school activities that enrich the lives of participants.

“This is so beneficial because I’m actually learning from experience,” says Katie Tucker ’21, an integrated educational studies major. “Being in the classroom and actually having to learn and adjust in the moment is so much better and more educational than just reading about it.”

Chapman students are also key volunteers at Centro Comunitario de Educación and The Futuros Brillantes Teen Mentoring Program.

Protecting the Earth

Each month, Panther volunteers help the Roots Native Habitat Restoration program remove invasive plant species and replant native species in Upper Newport Bay. Improving ecosystem dynamics is essential for protecting California’s wetlands.

Volunteers also assist with watering native plants as well as seed collection and propagation.

student pull weeds
Student volunteers to remove invasive plants in Upper Newport Bay.

“Through Roots I have learned how to identify ecosystems and about the impact of invasive species, as well as the adverse effects of human activity on our local environment,” says Avery Claire Bennett ’20, civic engagement assistant and peace studies major. “While I have studied these topics in a number of environmental courses, physically engaging with these ecosystems has certainly elevated my appreciation for them, fueling my passion for environmental justice.”

Volunteering — Professionally

Fowler School of Law students volunteer with local clinics that provide services to low-income individuals. At the Alona Cortese Elder Law Clinic, which provides legal assistance to seniors, Fowler Law students have helped the clinic resolve more than 200 cases in the past two years.

“Clients were so thankful for the services we provided, and many meetings ended in a friendly hug from a client,” said Megan Demshki (JD ’15). “It was the best feeling to hear the client’s relief when I told her that I would be at an upcoming hearing. That was one of those moments that reminded me why I went to law school in the first place. ”

Fowler School of Law students assist clients through a number of Chapman community clinics.

Chapman students also volunteer their time and professional services with the Bette and Wylie Aitken Family Protection Clinic, the Military and Veterans Law Institute, the Tax Law Clinic, and the Frances Smith Center for Individual and Family Therapy.

Display Image at Top/Chapman football players did some heavy lifting in preparation for the “Orange Field of Valor,” a Veterans Day event. 

Stephanie House