2019 NASPA Annual Conference

Why Volunteer?

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Why do you volunteer? People choose to volunteer for a variety of reasons. Some experts report that volunteering reduces stress because you are focusing on something other than yourself. As a Student Affairs professional, I often stated that community service projects connected or united the team or student group, as they worked towards a common goal.

I asked my friends and colleagues this same question. Many said they volunteered because it felt good, fed their soul, it was a gift to others, or they liked to give back to their community, faith, or sport that had given them so much joy. Some said it was a good way to learn new skills and gain experience or raise awareness about issues. The characteristic that was the same for everyone, Passion! Every person I spoke to (or commented on my Facebook) were passionate about volunteering, because the service was meaningful and impactful, in some way their work helped others, and because it was fun! Many shared their journey as a child when they cleaned a riverbed to earn a patch or reminded to help someone less fortunate than them. These transformative experiences turned into a passion, and as adults focused on the exchange of service and investment in their community. My experience as a child was similar, and today I find myself volunteering my time as a committee member for various groups, participating in local cleanup efforts, and today leading a project at the NASPA Annual Conference 2019.

Whatever the reason you volunteer, we hope you will join the fun in Los Angeles where there are endless opportunities to have a meaningful impact on our diverse community by participating in one of our unique projects on March 10, 2019. When you register for the NASPA Annual Conference, sign up for one of our community service projects. Lunch and a t-shirt will be included in your community service fee. NASPA Serves! See you March 10!

For the 2019 NASPA Annual Conference there will be two community service projects that attendees can register for:

White Point Nature Preserve

We hope you will join us at the White Point Nature Preserve, part of the Palos Verdes Land Conservatory for camaraderie and service as we help enhance and protect California’s open spaces. White Point Nature Preserve features restored coastal sage scrub habitat, hiking, and handicap accessible trails overlooking the Pacific Ocean and Catalina Island. White Point Nature Preserve hosts many environmental education events such as Nature Preserve Walks, Education Programs for schools and the public about our threatened plants and land, as well as many volunteer opportunities.

Our meaningful project will consist of restoring the garden for wildlife habitat including the Palos Verdes Blue Butterfly and California Gnatcatcher birds. Our work will include removing invasive weeds, watering native plants, and grooming trails for the next 100 years! We will be working outdoors, and need to wear closed-toed shoes, sun protection and be sure to bring drinking water and a snack, all other tools will be provided to us at the White Point Nature Preserve.

We know our participants will develop a deeper sense of connection to the NASPA Community, Los Angeles, and the important role we play in plant and animal life preservation. Please Join Us! 50 spots will be available for this project. 

If you have any questions, you may email Deborah Miller-Calvert.

Homeboy Industries

NASPA is excited to be collaborating with nationally known Homeboy Industries who provide hope, training, and support to formerly gang-involved and previously incarcerated men and women in the community. Homeboy Industries first began its efforts in the 1980s. In 1988 through the Dolores Mission, they began the “Jobs for a Future” campaign. In 2001, Homeboy Industries came to be, and it has then become one of the largest, most holistic, and successful “gang intervention, rehabilitation, and re-entry programs in the country.” Homeboy Industries impacts approximately 10,000 individuals a year through their different efforts, such as tattoo removal, workforce development, educational services, case management, legal services, mental health services, and solar panel institutional training and certification program.

We have the opportunity to work alongside the Educational Service branch of Homeboy Industries. The objectives for this community service project include: (1) provide comprehensive, holistic, and engaging workshops to homies in the areas of financial aid, re-entry services , hidden curriculum, and navigating higher education, (2) mentorship station, where potential mentors meet and engage with homies, (3) and provide tools to homies as to how shift deficit model systems while navigating higher education. In addition, Homeboy Industries has offered to provide NASPA Community Service attendees with the first ever Previously-Incarcerated student ally training workshop at the beginning of the community service day. The day is geared towards creating a high impact, community building, transformational experience for homies preparing to enter higher education. NASPA attendees will also obtain first-hand knowledge as to how to increase visibility, support, and success for previously incarcerated students navigating their institutions of higher education.

Join us and learn from the nation-leading Homeboy Industries in planting the seeds of change and support for previously incarcerated students in higher education! 50 spots will be available for this project.

If you need further information, please reach out to Magdalena Muñoz.

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