Black Hills State University students enrolled in the International Service Learning Program (ISLP) course this spring raised $2,340 for a childcare center in Soweto, South Africa.
In March, the BHSU students personally presented the childcare center with the money during their service learning experience in Botswana, Africa.
The childcare center owner, Hendricks, and his family built the childcare center on what used to be a garbage site. He has devoted his life to creating a safe, educational environment for the infants and primary children of Soweto. Up to this point Hendricks has put his own money and efforts into the construction and upkeep of the facility.
The money raised by the BHSU students is the equivalent to a year’s wages in Soweto. Hendricks indicated that part of the money would be used to install toilets for the children.
Jerry Rawlings, assistant professor of mass communication, served as a faculty leader for the ISLP course.
“I was extremely proud of the efforts that our students put in here at home to help the children of Soweto. Their efforts have truly made a difference in so many children’s lives,” said Rawlings.
BHSU provides experiential education opportunities for students to address human and community needs on a global scale. The ISLP program begins in the classroom at BHSU. Throughout the semester, a group of interdisciplinary students work on a project, culture and preparation before traveling abroad with their faculty-led group. Those who complete an ISLP course receive college credit.
BHSU has long-standing partnerships with schools in Botswana/South Africa and the Philippines. Annually, BHSU students teach inside the schools as part of the ISLP to assist the native students with academic and social skill development, as well as cultural exchange.
In addition to the 13 BHSU students who traveled to Africa this spring, Dr. Sharman Adams, dean of the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences at BHSU, and Dr. Louise Yoho, assistant professor of special education, conducted professional development workshops for the teachers onsite.
BHSU students who were enrolled in the ISLP Africa course included:
Victoria Geary, mass communication major from Winner
Jamison Hogan, photography major from Spearfish
Daxton Keegan, special education major from Belle Fourche
Rachel Kremer, elementary education major from Billings, Mont.
Samantha Lebert, outdoor education major from Colman
Justin Logue, psychology and political science major from Volin
Marissa McFarland, exercise science major from Spearfish
Drazen Moratzka, business administration-marketing major from Cheyenne, Wyo.
Ariel Pozorski, composite communication/English major from Rapid City
Jackelin Robles, mass communication and journalism major from Eckley, Colo.
Grace Stoebner, communication studies/theatre and mass communication major from Stillwater, Minn.
Josh Vaith, professional accountancy and business administration major from Scotland
To learn more about the ISLP at BHSU, visit www.BHSU.edu/international