When Jeff Rudy sent his seniors an article about students who completed a week of service for their community, he had no idea of the positive impact that would follow.
The story sparked an idea for Ashley Yanego, a senior enrolled in Mr. Rudy’s AP/DE English course. “When I read the article,” she said, “I saw an opportunity for SHS Seniors. I spent less than a week vigorously planning a Community Service day for seniors at SHS with my English teacher.”
For Ashley, the logical place to begin was to talk to Brian Spitzer,Town Manager of Strasburg, to find out what the seniors at Strasburg High School could do to benefit the town. He gave her a list that included work in four areas. SHS staff members volunteered to supervise each of the work areas.
Senior Day of Service Work Areas
1. Alsberry Street -- pick-up trash
Student workers: Damion Howard-Wolford, Ryan Heilman; and Miranda Colt.
Supervisor: Mrs. Lewis, School Librarian
2. Strasburg Park --
plant flowers, mulch areas and rake gravel especially
Student workers: Grace Mullins, Alyssa Stover, Noah Figgins, Faith Ritenour, LeeAnn Adams, Courtney Hodges, Emily Alexander, Ben Rodriguez, and Laura Wykoff.
Supervisor: Miss Carper, History/AP Government teacher7
3. Main Street--hand-out flowers to the businesses with Thank You notes from the SHS Class of 2016 and plant flowers in flower pots
Student workers: Ashley Yanego, Miley Hupp, Haley Copeland, Kelsey Jenkins, Rachel Funkhouser, Abie Murphy. Supervisor: Mr. Rudy, English teacher
Front: Rachel Funkhouser
Row 2 (L to R): Haley Copeland, Kelsey Jenkins
Back Row (L to R): Miley Hupp, Abigail Murphy, Ashley Yanego
4. Mr. Fisher, Agriculture teacher at SHS, suggested that students do some work around the school---mulch, trim shrubs, weed flower beds
Student Workers: Justin Carr, Austin Schletner, Reese Taylor, Papoose Stead, Isabel Davis, Jacob Ziemer, Brian Scholten, Rashon Alsberry, Adam Gordon, Josh Lockhart, Blake Gibson, and Max Middleton
Supervisor: Mr. Melish, English teacher
News about the Day of Service spread quickly among the seniors through conversations and social media, and students began volunteering to help. There were “no complaints, no negativity, and no problems,” reported Ashley. “Everyone got the work done together and had a blast.”
Ashley thanked students for “taking advantage of the opportunity to serve your community.” “Senior Service Day has to be taken as a day of service not self-gratification,” she wrote in her Current Events report. “Selflessly giving to our community will make others feel great. I hope that we all continue to serve the community. . . for great change.”
Jeff Rudy said it well, “The SHS Seniors spent this morning (June 2) doing community service for the town that has given them so much over their school career in Shenandoah County.”
First Row (L to R): Ben Rodriguez, Ashley Yanego, Kelsey Jenkins, Abigail Murphy, Haley Copeland, Courtney Hodges
Second Row (standing, L to R): Lee Ann Adams, Papoose Stead, Miranda Colt, Rachel Funkhouser, Noah Figgins, Faith Ritenour, Emily Alexander, Alyssa Stover, Ryan Hamilton, Grace Mullins, Laura Wykoff, Brian Scholten, Miley Hupp