One of our crowning achievements within the College Experience curriculum is the Volunteerism class originally created in 2016 by staff member, Kelly Weiss who currently serves as our Academic Coordinator.

This unique class covers a plethora of social issues related to the environment, litter collection, homelessness, and challenges plaguing our veterans after returning home. We do not merely talk about these issues in the comfort of a classroom, however. The class rolls up their collective sleeves to actually experience how they affect those in the public while simultaneously making a difference in the community with a series of local field trips.

On this particular day of Monday, June 24, 2019 the Volunteerism class was educated about the importance of living in a community unburdened by garbage in the form of cigarette butts and other debris strewn about by a handful of thoughtless citizens. It is not realistic for circumstances to ever be perfect, although there are more people out there who are conscientious than those who litter. We can all do our part to make the Capital Region of New York a little cleaner for everybody!

Students learned about how to turn litter collection into a fun activity as well as making small changes in one’s routine that will reduce our carbon footprint. Staff made suggestions such as refusing plastic straws at restaurants, avoiding Styrofoam products, and taking reusable Green Bags to the supermarket. The students also watched a video about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which is a collection of plastic garbage in the ocean the size of Texas.

After the lesson was completed, staff led the students to the nearby streets in the proximity of the College of Saint Rose. Armed with a litter collection claw to pick up glass shards and latex gloves…we got to work.

The fruits of our labors will not last forever, but on June 24th the streets became a little cleaner and hopefully put a smile on community members who saw us removing the debris.

The group has other Volunteerism activities planned such as a trip to the City of Albany Landfill to see how the waste produced by the Capital Region is processed in a manner that is environmentally safe.

College Experience Albany Clean UpFeatured in this photo of our litter collection crusade is (from left to right) Ryan, Ra’Kwon, and our sunscreen-slathered Media & Activities Liaison, Jesse Saperstein who lent his litter collection claw for the activity!