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News Stories

SUNY Erie students connect with community through Resource Council of WNY

Article by: Michael Farrell

BUFFALO—A collection of SUNY Erie Community College Social Science students have spent part of their fall semester connecting with their community through volunteer work at the Resource Council of Western New York and its community center at 347 East Ferry St. in Buffalo.

Starting on October 26, these students undertook efforts toward painting the inside of the Resource Council’s gymnasium, an asset for neighborhood children and adults who utilize the expanse. Conducted in conjunction with SUNY Erie’s robust Service Learning Initiative—that matches students with community partners for hands-on learning opportunities—the project will run through November and be complete by the end of the semester.

According to Carl Stokes, assistant professor at SUNY Erie and leader of the project, the effort is a great opportunity for students to connect with their community, all while earning critical growth as a student and young adult.

“The students have had the opportunity to step outside of their comfort zones and interact with people from different areas of Western New York,” said Stokes. “Many of them have developed relationships with inner city youth, their families, and student volunteers from other local colleges. [These] students understand the major impact that a little bit of time can make on these children and their community.”

The SUNY Erie outreach with the Resource Council of WNY—an organization that provides early intervention and mentoring through educational and athletic programming for youth, adults and U.S. veterans—has been multifaceted over the past year. Last spring, Stokes and students coordinated a book drive that solicited more than 800 books for the Council’s after-school activities and literacy programming; and this semester, the College has connected a separate group of Human Services students to the organization as interns. 

For more information about SUNY Erie’s Liberal Arts and Science – Social Science Program, please visit www.ecc.edu/client/programdetail.aspx?ID=4062.

For more information about the Resource Council of WNY, please visit www.resourcecouncilofwesternnewyork.wordpress.com.

Since 1946, Erie Community College has met the needs of a diverse student body while contributing to the economic vitality of Western New York. As a member of the state’s SUNY system, the three-campus college provides flexible, affordable and accessible educational programs in an accommodating academic environment. Equipped with the knowledge of these programs, ECC’s faculty, staff and students strive to enrich their host communities through skill, service and partnership. For more information, visit www.ecc.edu or call (716) 851-1ECC.