Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera Gives Keynote Speech
Nearly 1,000 Regis College students, faculty and staff participated in a day of service on the Weston campus and in Greater Boston on Thursday, Sept. 26. The day celebrates Founders’ Day, which marks the anniversary of the arrival of the Sisters of St. Joseph in Boston on October 2, 1873. Lawrence Mayor Dan Rivera, who received an honorary degree from Regis in May, presented a keynote speech about the importance of making change happen through community service.
“At Regis, we encourage our students to live out the mission of the Sisters of St. Joseph by serving others in need,” said Regis College President Antoinette M. Hays, PhD, RN. “We’re proud both of this day of service and that so many of our students choose majors that prepare them for excellence in the service professions including nursing, allied health and education.”
“Remember to work hard and fight hard and that your successes today will be the foundation for your success tomorrow,” said Mayor Rivera. “Change can only happen when you decide to make it happen. Service is critical to making right what is wrong today.”
Sister Mary L. Murphy, CSJ, kicked off the day with remarks about the power of community and respect.
More than 150 students traveled to Waltham to clean up a Department of Conservation and Recreation river bike path and walking path.
At Land’s Sake, a non-profit in Weston that supports environmental education and food donation programs, volunteers weeded, pruned, and prepared garden beds.
More than 100 students gathered in College Hall on campus to write letters to a soldier or military veteran, then wrap the letter with a donated paperback book for shipping for Operation Paperback. Volunteers also wrote letters of encouragement to caregiving youths across the country through American Association of Caregiving Youth (AACY). The organization’s Director of Education Services Ann Farone spoke to the group about what it means for these youth to take on a caregiving responsibility.
They also sorted donations and created hygiene and food bags for homeless youth in Worcester for Stand Up For Kids, a charity that works directly with thousands of homeless youth across the country. The non-profit’s Co-Executive Director Richard Wallace gave a presentation about the organization.
Volunteers designed and created cat and dog toys for the Worcester Animal Rescue League.
At Morgan Memorial Goodwill, which helps individuals with barriers to self-sufficiency achieve independence and dignity through work, volunteers engaged in arts and crafts projects with clients and facilitated mock interviews. In addition, 30 volunteers made necklaces for clients for the Dress for Success organization.
Others who chose to stay on campus participated in an American Red Cross blood drive organized by the Men’s Lacrosse team, helped sort stamps the Spellman Museum of Stamps and Postal History, participated in a field day for our youngest students from the Children’s Center led by the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), and created kindness rocks to line the Center’s walkway.
Regis volunteers assisted immigrants and refugees with English literacy programs at the Casserly House, a Sisters of St. Joseph ministry whose mission is to provide learning experiences and support services to the multicultural and underserved people in Roslindale.
Senior citizens from Weston participated in a one-on-one social media workshop to learn how to use the latest platforms. Members from the Weston Council on Aging and Lifelong Learning at Regis College participated.
Several dozen others gathered on campus in Maria Hall to create blessing blankets for the Community Day Center in Waltham to keep the chronically homeless warm during the cold winter months.
Others at Regis utilized the Nutrition program’s kitchen to bake bread for Spread the Bread, a foundation dedicated to offering hope, inspiration and gratitude to our first responders, schools, businesses and churches. They delivered bread to Weston Police and Fire departments.
Volunteers at Community Servings helped prepare and package meals to individuals and families throughout Massachusetts living with critical and chronic illnesses.
Volunteers participated in numbers projects for the Sisters of St. Joseph of Boston, the religious community that founded the university more than 90 years ago. Glee Singers performed during mass at Bethany Hill Health Care Center in Framingham and had lunch with the retired sisters. In addition, volunteers created centerpieces for the health center.
On campus, volunteers created and painted a mural depicting a modern representation of the values of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Boston to display on campus.