College of Mount Saint Vincent students are united by a shared concern for others. Students are inducted into this culture of service during the First Year Experience (FYE) course, and that commitment is sustained through ongoing projects addressing hunger, homelessness, educational disparities, and human trafficking, among many others.
The Seton Service and Leadership Scholars Program offers a special opportunity to students who have demonstrated an exemplary devotion to promoting the common good.
Partnering with local social service agencies, students have the opportunity to volunteer with some of the most disadvantaged populations all across New York City.
Hunger and Homelessness Outreach
- All Saint Food Pantry is open once a week and provides bags of nutritious food to hungry individuals and families.
- Saint Francis Breadline is a social outreach ministry of the Franciscan Friars of Holy Name Province committed to serving those less fortunate. Meet at 6 a.m. to help hand out food in the breadline down in Midtown.
- Part of the Solution (POTS) is a social service agency in the Bronx. We bring food donations and work in the kitchen usually on select Sundays leaving campus at 11:15 a.m. and returning by 4:15 p.m.
- Meet in Campus Ministry at 8:30 p.m., and leave campus by 9 p.m. for the Midnight Run. Volunteers travel down to midtown Manhattan to hand out food, clothing, and engage in conversation with the homeless. Arrive back to campus between 12:30-1:30 a.m.
- Life Experience and Faith Sharing Association (LEFSA) is a weekly outreach to the homeless in New York City. The group meets at 3:45 p.m. on Mondays and returns to campus at about 8:45 p.m.
Youth Mentoring and Tutoring
- Park Ledge is an after-school program located in Yonkers, N.Y. This outreach may be of interest to any student who would like to tutor children grades K-8. It is a great opportunity for commuters who live in the area.
- POTS is one-on-one tutoring with a child in the South Bronx. Students may attend a community dinner after tutoring.
- MASA, founded in 2001 as the Mexican American Students’ Alliance, provides tutoring and mentorship for students in the area.
Service with the Sisters
- Visit and talk with the Sisters at the Convent and provide a ministry of presence through Manicures at the Convent of Mary the Queen.
- Join the Sisters of Charity each Tuesday from late spring until mid-November as they unload and distribute fresh produce from the Sisters Hill Farm in upstate New York from 4-6 p.m. behind the Villa Parking Lot as part of SCNY Farm Distribution.
- Join the Sisters at the Convent for dinner and conversation through Supper with the Sisters.
Sports Related Service
- Yonkers Marathon allows volunteers to assist with the setting up water stops for those running the marathon.
- NYC Mayors Cup allows volunteers to perform a variety of tasks, including set up and breakdown, enhancing the race experience, media relations, and much more. Good for students looking for experience in the sports industry.
- Wheelchair Basketball Tournament allows volunteers to assist with set up and breakdown, cheering on athletes, time, and score keeping.
- Tour de Bronx allows volunteers to assist at various locations along the race route to distribute water, check in with athletes, help with set up and breakdown, and much more.
Awareness and Advocacy Events
- During Box City, students will hear testimonies from formerly homeless individuals and those who work with the homeless, including student volunteers, as well as engage in toiletry kit making and sandwich making. From 10 p.m. onward students will construct a “box shelter” and sleep outside in front of Hayes Auditorium to promote awareness of the homeless population in our city.
- Volunteers are invited to either give blood or help assist with advertising, sign ups, and escorting donors each day of the Blood Drive from 11:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m.
- Making Strides Walk
- Out of the Darkness Walk
- Peoples Climate March
Outreach to People with Developmental Disabilities
- Dance for PD Riverdale is a movement class for individuals with Parkinson’s and their families, friends, and caregivers. The group meets from 11 a.m.-12:15 p.m. on Thursdays in the Peter Jay Sharp Athletic and Recreation Center.
- The Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center is committed to changing the lives of medically fragile children, one child at a time. All of their programs are centered around children and their families, respecting individual cultural beliefs and practices.
- Leake and Watts continues to positively impact the lives of more than 5,000 children, adults, and families in the greater New York City metro area each day. Leake and Watts is a not-for-profit agency committed to addressing a myriad of challenges that confront individuals and families dealing with poverty, disabilities, and a lack of access to education and basic services.
- Commuter Volunteer Corps (CVC) is a growing community of volunteers who are interested in helping their local neighborhood and sharing those experiences with other students.
Mission and Ministry Trips
Mission and Ministry trips are extended service trips or retreats in which students gain a deeper understanding of our commitment to living the Mission of the College. Through hands-on service with those most in need and immersion into new cultures, students gain a new perspective and engage in meaningful opportunities.
Students serve locally in Yonkers, New York City, and New Jersey, domestically in West Virginia, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and New Orleans, and abroad in the Sisters of Charity Clinics in Guatemala.
For more information or applications, please contact the Office of Campus Ministry.
Mission and Ministry Trips 2015-2016
- Saint Francis Inn, Philadelphia: September 11-13
- New Beginnings, First-Year Student Retreat, Standfordville, NY: TBD
- The Sophomore Spirituality Retreat, Long Beach Island, NJ: November 6-8
- St. Bernard Project, New Orleans: January 4-9
- Guatemala: January 11-18, June 5-12
- Bethlehem Farm, West Virginia: January 10-16
More Service Opportunities
Service through College Employment
Students with tight budgets and a passion for service have opportunities to serve the Riverdale and surrounding communities, and be paid through the College of Mount Saint Vincent’s Work Study program. Students can work with the following organizations:
- Methodist Home for Nursing and Rehabilitation
- Work with geriatric nursing home patients through a variety of patient activity assignments and office support functions.
- Riverdale Neighborhood House and Leake and Watts
- Work with early childhood education students and young teens engaging them in athletic activities, arts and crafts, structured games, and tutoring and homework help. Communication majors assist in promoting these organizations to the larger Riverdale and Yonkers communities.
Student-Athlete Service Projects
In keeping with the College’s mission of the development of the whole person, student-athletes are encouraged to pursue excellence in the classroom, on the playing fields, and in their communities. Student-athletes live and breathe the College’s mission by engaging in service projects, both on and off campus. Examples of activities are listed below:
- Cleaning up a Yonkers park
- Assisting with new student move in
- Assisting with the Yonkers Marathon
- Hosting a Breast Cancer Awareness Game, raising money for a cure
- Hosting an Alumni game, raising money for Intracranial Hypertension Research
- Raising money for the Toys For Children campaign
- Hosting “Take A Kid To A Game Day”
- Matthew Sapolin Wheelchair Basketball Tournament
- Mayor’s Cup
The College of Mount Saint Vincent’s Student Government works with Concern Worldwide U.S., Inc., the College’s charity. Concern Worldwide works in the 28 poorest countries in the world and it is one of the few NGO’s not expelled from Darfur.
Student Government collaborates with Concern Worldwide to support the needs of these countries by raising awareness through distributing literature on campus, participating in Concern’s Fun Run in Central Park, and other initiatives to raise money for Concern’s efforts. In response to the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, Student Government and the Mount’s clubs and organizations raised over $5,500 for Haitian relief. After Typhoon Haiyan struck in the Philippines, over $50,000 was raised by SGA and student group SAMAHAN to be put toward aid and relief efforts by Concern Worldwide.