|South Carolina student named Volunteer of the Month
RELEASED: March 18, 2004
DANVILLE, KYKate Spear, a senior English major from Greenville, S.C., has been named Centre's Volunteer of the Month for February.
Spear is involved in a number of volunteer activities at Centre, but perhaps the most demanding this year has been her role as president of C.A.R.E (Centre Action Reaches Everyone), the college's student-run service organization.
"I oversee the different aspects and components of C.A.R.E," she says. "I make sure that the Blood Drive people get what they need and the Salvation Army people get what they need. There are different contacts for each agency we work with, so I make sure everything's arranged and the dates are right."
Trina McFarland, director of service and leadership development, says Spear is up to the task.
"Kate's done a beautiful job as president. She's supportive and encouraging of all the officers," McFarland says. "She's aware of the work that goes into each event and is always willing to stand back and applaud the work of others or jump in and help.
"Having Kate as C.A.R.E president has made being the advisor a dream for me. She's dedicated and responsible, and I've learned as much or more from her than she has from me."
A previous Volunteer of the Month, Becky Barrick, a junior from Danville, Ky., also has high praise for Spear.
"Kate is very dedicated to C.A.R.E. She's really strengthened the group with her leadership and creative ideas," she says. "Kate is positive and encouraging keeping everyone motivated to do a good job in their office. C.A.R.E is new and improved this year, and she's a big reason for that."
Spear is also the coordinator for LIFT (Learning Is Fun Together), a five-week enrichment program for 4th- and 5th-grade students from Danville and Boyle County.
But her energy doesn't stop there.
Spear is in the process of organizing the first-ever Spring Service Plunge. Nearly 65 volunteers will gather for pizza and an inspiring talk from Centre president John Roush before offering their services at Charleston Health Care, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, the Humane Society, the Salvation Army Thrift Store and Woodlawn's Children's Campus.
Spear explained her reasons for adding this new event.
"The Service Plunge in the fall is a huge success, and I think Centre students would like to volunteer more often, but they don't know about the different agencies or they don't have a way to get there. This gives them a chance to learn more about the places they can serve."
Spear is also helping put together an ESL (English as a Second Language) dictionary at Hogsett Elementary in Danville.
"When [children] come to school, they'll get a dictionary that will allow them to hear what the teacher's saying and have a picture to go along with it," Spear says.
And if you've noticed that aiding children is a theme here, it will come as no surprise that Spear hopes to spend the next year as an au pair in France, then perhaps go to graduate school to continue her studies to become a teacher.
"Every time I go to Hogsett I think, 'Oh, yeah, this is it. I want to be a teacher,' " she says.
But no matter what her future holds, Spear will take with her some wonderful memories from Centre.
"My best experience at Centre was going to London last spring. That was probably the best experience of my life. I loved London! I love Europe, and that's part of what prompted me to want to be an au pair."
The volunteer award program at Centre recognizes some of the many students who provide service to the local community. Each year, around 60 percent of all Centre students become community volunteers. The College encourages volunteer service with a community-service day each year as part of the orientation for first-year students. For more information, contact McFarland at (859) 238-5479 or e-mail email@example.com.
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