A Day of Service
By Sarah Van De Weert, Staff Writer
On April 13, the Gettysburg College community paused to remember the life of Emily Silverstein, a student who was murdered on April 9, 2009. The College held its fourth annual Day of Service to honor her memory.
Over 70 students and alumni came out on Saturday to continue Emily’s legacy of her love for community service by carrying out various service projects within the community, including working on farms, cleaning soup kitchens and painting fences. All participating students were given a blue ribbon imprinted with the words, “In Memory of Emily.”
The Day of Service was started in 2010 by Noor Oweis, Class of 2012. One hundred and fifty students came to remember Emily through contributions to the community during the first Day of Service, and in the event’s second year, over 300 participated.
Some students, like senior Kevin Lugo, participated for reasons related to the creation of the event.
“I love service, and I think this [the Day of Service] is a great tradition to honor Emily’s Legacy,” he said. “The Class of 2012 was the last to really know Emily, but every year we [Gettysburgians] carry on her spirit of service and compassion through our volunteer work.”
Others wanted to help others, like First-year Heather Ipsen.
“I volunteered to clean up the soup kitchen because I love to feel like I’m helping out in the community,” she said. “Even though it was indirectly, I knew we were helping out the people who put so much time and effort into feeding the less fortunate in Gettysburg.”
Ipsen also mentioned honoring Emily as a motivation in participating.
“I didn’t know Emily Silverstein personally, but she seems like she was a wonderful person who truly cared about the community. She should be remembered and is an inspiration to me and many other students,” she said.
The Day of Service is planned to occur once again in 2013 to continue to honor Emily. If anyone has questions or wants to get involved, contact Cassi Franz, Kara VanBoargn or the Women’s Center. To find out more about Emily, visit the Women’s Center webpage or theemilyfund.org.
Noor Oweis, the founder of Day of Service, and Franz, this year’s organizer, encourage students to honor Emily by participating in the Day of Service either as part of the event or by just doing service on that day.