As part of a larger attempt to redirect the organization’s focus, Dwight Hall is expanding its outreach to different communities on campus.
The 129-year-old group has developed two new outreach initiatives to better connect with residential colleges and Greek organizations. The new Community Service Outreach Fellows Program has selected 12 students to act as liaisons in residential college communities, said Briana Burroughs ’17, the Dwight Hall institutional service coordinator. Additionally, Dwight Hall has announced a Greek Life Competition that aims to link fraternities and sororities with local nonprofits. According to Burroughs, these programs are part of a larger redirection of the organization to expand its brand and institutional memory.
“We have just gone through our strategic planning process that has given us a cohesive view of what Dwight Hall should be doing,” Dwight Hall Executive Director Peter Crumlish said. “Every student at Yale knows they should do service, and Dwight Hall’s role is to facilitate that by reaching out to different communities on campus.”
Dwight Hall first initiated conversations about the CSOF program earlier this year as a way to expand the role of service on campus, Program Manager Mark Fopeano said. He added that reaching into the residential college community was a natural way to make service a more integral part of the Yale experience.
The 12 CSOF fellows were chosen in March and include representatives from various residential colleges, as well as an additional member for admitted students and freshmen, according to head fellow Sarah Pajka ’17. She added that the fellows will provide students with more accessible, less formal service opportunities within their own communities. Beyond acting as liaisons for Dwight Hall, representatives are required to plan one community service activity per semester for their individual colleges, starting this term.
Dwight Hall has similarly reached out to Greek organizations to help facilitate their philanthropic activities. Burroughs said that while many of the Greek organizations have already been engaging in philanthropy, some have not found a suitable outlet. After initial communications in February with fraternities and sororities, Dwight Hall announced the Greek Life Competition that will begin on April 11, the Dwight Hall Day of Service. Crumlish said the competition is a creative way to encourage the spirit of service in a competitive environment. Dwight Hall representatives said the types of events to be held for the competition have not yet been finalized.
Members of several Greek organizations said they are excited for the opportunity.
“Greek life at Yale, and as a whole, provides a unique opportunity to promote community outreach and service, and efforts made by Dwight Hall to tap into that is very important,” Chi Psi President Taylor Rogers ’17 said.
Delta Kappa Epsilon Philanthropy Chair Khalid Cannon ’17 said Dwight Hall’s involvement can unite the efforts of all the fraternities and sororities to give back to the community.
An important component of the competition will be the recording and verification of all activities on an online submission system.
“Our initiative is to get our message of service out to all different areas, communities and councils,” she said. “We want to create institutional memory about philanthropy both in Dwight Hall and in these organizations.”
Dwight Hall was founded in 1886.