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In the Community...And @ Your Service

In the Community...And @ Your Service

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     Faculty, staff, and students from the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown will be out in the in full-force next week as part of the college’s “Pitt-Johnstown @ Your Service” week. The project, which will stretch from Sunday, October 18 through Saturday, October 24, will include nearly 30 service projects and events for the community. 

     The week-long service initiative is the second “Pitt-Johnstown @ Your Service” week, which debuted in March.  During that week, the campus community performed more than 150 volunteer hours while sponsoring 20 service projects and community events.

     Pitt-Johnstown President Dr. Jem Spectar offered, “We launched this initiative to further enhance our ties to the surrounding communities and fulfill our mission as a public-serving institution.  In this, our second ‘@ Your Service’ week, we are strategically expanding our focus to address areas of vital importance to both Pitt-Johnstown and our community, including health promotion, veteran outreach, and workforce development.  This ambitious undertaking is just one of many ways that our faculty, staff and students serve our region and demonstrate the Pitt-Johnstown commitment to service that sustains and transforms our communities.”

“Pitt-Johnstown @ Your Service” events include:

  • Story Time-“The Mountain Cat Who Mattered”
    Volunteers are sharing the story of how the Pitt-Johnstown Mountain Cat became the college’s official mascot.  The Mountain Cat will also distribute special Pitt-Johnstown pencils and copies of the story to the children. Sessions will be conducted at East Side and West Side Elementary Schools.
  • Goodwill Visit: Conemaugh Hospital
    The Pitt-Johnstown Mountain Cat will make its rounds spreading good will (and special Pitt-Johnstown gifts) to children in the pediatric unit and residents of the Good Samaritan Nursing Care Center.
  • Salvation Army Soup Kitchen
    Pitt-Johnstown volunteers are putting their culinary skills to the test when they prepare and serve the Tuesday and Thursday evening meal at the Salvation Army.
  • Defense Veterans Brain Injury Center Picnic
    Pitt-Johnstown volunteers will be serving a picnic dinner to veterans and military personnel with traumatic brain injuries who are currently at the Defense Veterans Brain Injury Center in Westmont.
  • Goodwill Visit: Laurelwood Nursing Center
    Volunteers are delivering flowers to residents of the Laurelwood Nursing Center, and assist them in preparing for the musical performance, “Cloud of Grace.”
  • Goodwill Visit:  SeniorLIFE
    Volunteers will be visiting with the guests and engaging in social activities ranging from games to crafts at SeniorLife. 
  • Goodwill Visit:  Arbutus Park Retirement Community
    Volunteers are visiting with the residents of the Arbutus Park Retirement Community, while presenting them with autumn flowers.
  • Goodwill Visit:  Atrium Manor
    Pitt-Johnstown Blue and Gold Society members are holding a “Bingo Nite” for residents of the Atrium Manor. 
  • The Learning Lamp/Boys and Girls Club Moxham Outreach Site
    Volunteers will be reaching out to the children in first through eighth grade at the Learning Lamp’s afterschool program.  In addition to sharing the story, “The Mountain Cat Who Mattered,” volunteers will also conduct educational games for the older children.  This activity also coincides with the National Light’s On After School program.
  • Breast Cancer Screening and Open House
    As part of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Pitt-Johnstown volunteers will be helping Conemaugh Health System’s Richland Care Center with a special breast cancer screening by greeting visitors, checking them in, and distributing literature.
  • Humane Society Clean-Up
    Even our four-legged friends are benefitting from
    “@Your Service Week” as Pitt-Johnstown volunteers help the Humane Society of Cambria County with some clean-up projects and small chores.
  • ACRP Baseball Field Renovation
    Members of the Pitt-Johnstown baseball team are helping the Alternative Community Resource Program (ACRP) children clean-up an old baseball field in the Tanneryville section of Johnstown.
  • Blanket and Canned Good Drive
    Monday, October 19 through Friday, October 23
    The Pitt-Johnstown Intersorority Council will be collecting new and gently worn (but clean) blankets and non-perishable food items for the Salvation Army.  Items will be collected in the Student Union (in front of the Cambria Room) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
  • Lions Recycle for Sight
    Monday, October 19 through Friday, October 23
    The Pitt-Johnstown Intersorority Council will be collecting eyeglasses for the Lions Club.  Drop off boxes will be located in the Student Union (in front of the Cambria Room) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Used glasses can also be dropped off in the special collection box located in the first floor lobby of Blackington Hall (the bin will be available the entire week).
  • National Make a Difference Day
    Saturday, October 24
    Pitt-Johnstown first-year students will complete several projects including working at a local food shelter during the day; reading books to children at the library; cleaning up the grounds around campus, and collecting items for soldiers and making care packages.

The Greater Johnstown community is invited to a number of free events throughout the “Pitt-Johnstown @ Your Service” week:
Workplace Readiness Series
The challenges of finding a job in today’s uncertain economy can be daunting.  Coming off the college’s incredibly successful “100 Day/100% Initiative,” Pitt-Johnstown career counselors are ready and waiting to help you with your job search.  Four workshops will be conducted, completely free of charge, during the week:

  • Building a Winning Resume
    Monday, October 19
    (10-11:30 a.m.; Central Park Complex, downtown Johnstown)
    Your resume is often the basis of a prospective employer’s first impression, so learn the ins and outs of developing a powerful resume.  Among the topics to be discussed are: proper formatting, content, word choice, and targeting your resume to a specific employer or industry.
    Professional Etiquette for Your Job Search
    Monday, October 19
    (1-2:30 p.m.; Central Park Complex, downtown Johnstown)
    Learn the importance of professional etiquette during a professional job search.  We’ll discuss a variety of areas that may enhance your chances of obtaining a new job.
  • Interviewing Skills Workshop
    Wednesday, October 21
    (10-11:30 a.m.; Central Park Complex, downtown Johnstown)
    Learn how to prepare for an interview, attend an interview with confidence, and end an interview professionally. We’ll discuss the importance of proper preparation and evaluate body language, verbal skills, and attitude.
  • Fine-Tuning Your Resume
    Wednesday, October 21
    (1-2:30 p.m.; Central Park Complex, downtown Johnstown)
    Bring your current resume and allow our professional staff to review it and offer suggestions on ways to improve it.  Please have a recent resume for this workshop.
  • Mountain Cat Midnight Madness
    Sunday, October 18 (11:30 p.m., Sports Center)
    The Pitt-Johnstown Athletics Department is getting ready for the winter sports season and hopes to build the excitement across campus and in the community.  Members of the men’s and women’s basketball teams will be showcased during a short inter-squad scrimmage.  A slam dunk and 3-point contest also will be held.  Admission is free to the general public.  Monies being raised from this event will benefit Make-A-Wish Foundation.  Canned goods/nonperishable food items also are being collected.
  • Haunted House (for ages 10 and up)
    Thursday, October 22 (9 p.m. to midnight, Larkspur 5)
    Children’s games and pumpkins for children who attend.  Admission is $1 with monies being raised from this event benefitting the National Kidney Foundation.  Sponsored by Phi Sigma Sigma, Housing and Residence Life-President’s Scholars, and RealWorld Interest Groups.

“Pitt-Johnstown @ Your Service” week focuses not only on the local community, but the global community, as well.  The Series promotes greater global competency with regard to the pressing issues of our time as well as various social, political, economic, ecological, cultural, and technological changes at the global level and their overlapping consequences in our local communities.  Events during the week are:
International Success Stories
Pitt-Johnstown international students from China, Nigeria, Rwanda, Taiwan, Russia, Cameroon, and Vietnam will share stories of their native countries with elementary school children from Ferndale, Westmont, and Windber Elementary Schools, and will discuss the ways that life differs in the United States.

  • Invisible Children Fall Tour 2009
    Monday, October 19 (6 to 9 p.m., Pasquerilla Performing Arts Center)
    The Invisible Children movement has brought the issue of Uganda’s night commuters and child soldiers to the attention of millions of Americans.  Join us for an informative and highly moving documentary on the “invisible children” of Uganda, where children are both the weapons and victims.  This film, which exposes the realities of northern Uganda’s night commuters and child soldiers, has inspired countless Americans to ask the question, “How can I help?”

It is estimated that nearly two billion people around the world live in sub-standard housing, and more than 100 million people are homeless.   With one of the most active college chapters in the country, the Pitt-Johnstown chapter of Habitat for Humanity members are doing their part to make a difference.  Throughout the
“@Your Service” week members will be involved in a number of projects and activities to raise awareness of the issue of homelessness:
Clubhouse Construction Project
Monday through Friday (10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the Campus Mall)
Members will construct two children’s clubhouses, which will be donated to local Habitat families.  Be sure to stop by and check the progress.

  • Gulf Coast Exhibit
    Monday through Friday (10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Student Union)
    The traveling exhibit portrays the devastation that resulted from hurricanes Katrina and Rita, and the difference that was made by Habitat for Humanity volunteers.  The exhibit traces the events beginning just days after the storms’ impact and the cleanup and rebuilding that were so critical to the area’s recovery.
  • Cardboard City
    Monday, October 19 through Thursday, October 22 (overnight on the Campus Mall)
    Members will create awareness of the serious issue of homelessness by residing in shelters constructed from cardboard boxes…no heat, no electricity, no television, and no plumbing.
  • Popsicle Stick Build
    Thursday, October 22 (7 to 9 p.m. Student Union)
    Students will compete in teams of three to see which team can build the best miniature home from Popsicle sticks.  This activity, which takes place at schools across the country, incorporates the principles of Habitat for Humanity (“decent, affordable homes,” all of which have four walls and a roof) while creating awareness of the organization.
  • Briars in the Cotton Patch
    Thursday, October 22 (9 to 10 p.m. Student Union)
    A viewing will be held of the film Briars in the Cotton Patch, which tells the story of the founding of Habitat for Humanity.  Narrated by UN Ambassador Andrew Young, the documentary is a story of race, religion, and terror.

     Founded in 1927, Pitt-Johnstown is located in the Laurel Highlands of Western Pennsylvania and is the first and largest regional campus of the University of Pittsburgh.  The University offers a high-quality educational experience in a supportive living-learning environment designed to prepare students for the real world of the 21st century.  Pitt-Johnstown is recognized by U.S.News & World Report as a “Best Baccalaureate College” (2010), by the Princeton Review as a “Best Northeastern College” (2010), and by G.I. Jobs as a “Military Friendly School.”

Posted by Knipple, Robert on 10/13/2009 4:05:00 PM