URI
Think Big, We Do.
Rhode Island Seal

Build communities from the ground up. Literally.

3 URI students in front of the URI-sponsored Habitat for Humanity home

By the time the Stone family moved into their new home one block from URI’s Kingston campus, hundreds of URI students, faculty and staff had donated more than 2,550 work hours and raised $84,000 to help make it possible.

We study habitats in our environmental labs, but we also help build them through our long-standing partnership with Habitat for Humanity. This year, in partnership with South County Habitat for Humanity, the URI Habitat club launched a building project consisting of four quaint cottages about a block from our Kingston campus in a neighborhood called Old North Village.

Fact is, outreach and community service is an important part of our mission at URI. And if it’s an important part of yours too, then we hope you’ll become one of our many big thinkers.

Most of our students had no construction experience before the project began, but quickly found it inspirational. For Kathryn Phillips – a textiles, fashion merchandising and design major – the construction provided a new perspective on design. Political science major Scott Andrew ’12 became president of the campus Habitat chapter after spending hours hammering nails and using power tools on roofing, siding, and masonry projects. History major Charley Marshall got hooked on Habitat after realizing the difference he could make in the lives of others. Students who wanted to help without a swinging a hammer supported the cause on the fundraising, public relations, service learning, and social committees, all which enlisted other student groups to hold a variety of fundraisers.

Our students also know there’s a need for affordable housing in other parts of the nation and world. Old North Village is part of a larger URI effort, called the URI Building Homes Campaign, which includes supporting Habitat projects in Haiti and Chile. Our URI Helping Haiti Committee donated URI’s first campaign gift in 2010 – $2,500 – which covered the entire cost of our first home in Haiti. And by the end of last year’s effort, another $6,160 went to build another house in Haiti and one in Chile.

URI’s First Lady, the Rev. Lynn Baker-Dooley, said students were especially excited about fundraising that would help locally and also improve lives in other countries. For some students, like Kari Lukovics, just donating isn’t enough. This public relations major got the fever for building Habitat homes after taking part in URI’s alternative spring break to help rebuild homes in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Now she’s the URI Habitat for Humanity public relations chairperson, spreading the good word about the organization and getting real-world experiences toward her career.

Fact is, outreach and community service is an important part of our mission at URI. And if it’s an important part of yours too, then we hope you’ll become one of our many big thinkers.

Tags: , ,

Copyright © 2014 University of Rhode Island.

The University of Rhode Island
Think Big, We do.
DirectoryContact UsAlertsJump to top