School of Education Students Participate
in Service Abroad
School of Education Professor Andrew Ferdinandi, Ph.D., and a group
of his students are currently just beyond the mid-way point of
their eight-day service trip to Rome. Staying at St. Johns
University beautiful Rome campus in the Prati section of the city,
the group of 13 graduate and undergraduate students has been
combining sightseeing and service to create what is turning out to
be a most memorable experience.
The St. John’s students participated in providing both lunch and
dinner for approximately 980 persons in need at two soup
kitchens. Sandwiched in between the soup kitchen experiences
was a visit to a local grammar school where the students had the
opportunity to converse with the school’s principal and faculty,
sharing ideas and experiences about how the two countries educate
future leaders. On December 10, the group attended a Papal
audience in the morning, visited a substance-abuse program at
Gemelli Hospital (the Pope’s hospital) and participated in a
holiday party with aged people in need.
One of the student service providers, Jennifer Herold, reported
that the soup kitchen gave her a "greater awareness of how poverty
crosses all age, color, and gender barriers and is clearly a global
issue." Geraldine Castelli stated that "our experience at
Caritas is very humbling to say the least." She goes on to
say that "this service trip has already been extraordinary and, in
addition to the experience of service, I am also developing some
friendships that I think I will have for a very long time.
This trip will be with me forever."