Service Learning – recapturing the spirit of community among students.
As one of the practical components of education at Northrise University, Service Learning was introduced in 2010 to impart in students a heightened sense of responsibility towards issues in the communities they interact with. Today, Northrise students are among the most aware and connected young people to pertinent issues in the local communities. Service Learning has ignited a fire of altruism; this year especially, it is commonplace to see individual students, campus groups and clubs engaging in various forms of charitable endeavors. There is a growing pride in giving back and helping out. Here a sense of hope is roused, that more of such influence holds potential to reverse the selfish trends that have plagued Zambia in recent years. We can say with confidence, pride and gratitude that the repertoire of educational provision at Northrise University is helping to recapture the spirit of community and excellence among young people. And in a few years’ time, Northrise will have populated the industry of Zambia with leaders who have a heart for the welfare of the nation.
We are thankful to God that this year we have already started seeing spectacular rewards of the university’s consistent investment in the spiritual formation of students. Instead of the usual celebrations of February, the students opted to express love by holding a fundraising valentine’s event to raise financial support for a community school reading program. The students baked, cooked and turned the campus dining hall into a dance hall. With the funds the students raised, story books and other logistics to start the Service Learning program at Mapalo Academy were paid for.
The first session of the Mapalo Service Learning program was very successful. Hearts were touched on both sides; the pupils could sense the care and compassion from the Northrise team, while it was fulfilling for the students to give their time and support to a community of underprivileged children. This partnership with Mapalo Morning Glow Academy speaks volumes about the Christian ethos of Northrise; the determination for education to be a truly transforming and inspiring experience. With an approach to start from the inside out; from the spiritual formation to the intellectual and the physical development of the person, our hope and prayer is that in many ways, curriculum instruments such as Service Learning will keep touching on all core values of empowering our students for leadership responsibilities in Zambia and beyond.
Written by Madalitso Kalombe