Several hundred OBU students, including freshmen, transfers and upperclassmen, as well as faculty and staff, spent Monday morning, Aug. 19, serving the Shawnee community. The army of volunteers rolled up their sleeves and got to work all around town. The effort was part of OBU’s annual Serve Shawnee event, held the Monday before the fall semester begins.
The students served at more than 30 locations around the community, working at places such as Santa Fe Depot Museum, Cargo Ranch, Community Renewal/Friendship House, The Ritz Theater, Hope House, the Japanese Peace Garden and more.
Serve Shawnee began almost 20 years ago as a way to give back to the Shawnee community and to teach OBU students the importance of local service. Every August, new students go out into the community for three hours on a Monday morning to locations in and near Shawnee. Upperclassmen and staff lead the groups as they work on various projects including landscaping, painting, cleaning, and more in various types of locations.The Serve Shawnee project is part of Welcome Week, an annual tradition on Bison Hill where new students learn about OBU traditions, build lasting friendships and participate in fun activities together before classes begin. They spend time in small groups, learn the school chant and take “The Walk” to officially bring them into the OBU family.