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Service Day: Lyon students ‘build community’ by giving back

Over 200 Lyon students, staff, and faculty visited sites across Batesville for the College’s annual Service Day on Oct. 20, completing over 400 volunteer hours.

Taylor Fitterling, Student Government Association president, welcomed the volunteers on the steps of Brown Chapel on Wednesday morning and thanked them for participating.

“Service Day enhances our connection to Batesville, not just the city but the people,” Fitterling said. “It’s a great way to learn valuable lessons that can’t be learned in a classroom and gain life skills like problem solving, managing stress, and being a team player.”

Interim President Dr. Melissa Taverner said the annual event sees the Lyon community taking a break from their usual jobs on campus to go out into the community and serve.

“We do a different kind of work that will improve the quality of life in our neighborhood of Batesville,” Taverner said, “whether it’s cleaning up a riverbank, tidying up public spaces, or assisting one of our many local agencies.”

She continued, “Our hope is that you will take this mindset of service forward beyond today and you will continue to find ways to serve your local family, wherever you may be.”

Mayor Rick Elumbaugh told students he was glad they are giving back to the Batesville community and glad that they chose to attend Lyon College.

“We have so many needs in this community. We have tried to work on quality of place and quality of life,” he said. “I’m so glad you’re here in Batesville. Thank you for serving our community today!” 

The 27 service sites included Main Street Batesville, the Humane Society, the VFW, and the Child Advocacy Center.

Freshman Chase Orf spent his first Service Day with the Honors Fellows, pulling weeds along Main Street.

“It was a really nice day to come out and work with gardening tools,” he said.

Sophomore Emersen Ross said it was her first Service Day as well. She said the Fellows got to learn a lot about the history of Batesville as they worked.

“It wasn’t bad at all. I had fun and got to be with friends,” Ross said. “We got to make the plants downtown look pretty.”

Senior Dat O swept litter off the sidewalks with the International Students Association.

“Service Day is great because it helps us build the community up.”

Junior Kimberly Fretwell picked up trash downtown with the Women’s Soccer Team.

“I love that we’re able to give back to such a wonderful community.”

On Oct. 21, Interim Vice President of Student Life Danell Hetrick thanked students, faculty and staff for coming together for a successful Service Day. She recognized Lyon Chaplain Rev. Maggie Alsup for her work organizing the event.

“Her hard work both behind the scenes and on the ground creates for the entire Lyon College community these opportunities to serve and motivates the servant heart in all of us,” Hetrick said. “Thank you, Reverend Alsup! Thank you, Lyon family!”