“Truly I tell you, just as you did it to one of the least of these, who are members of my family, you did it to me.” (Mt. 25:40)
Goal of the Service Learning Program
At Our Lady of Lourdes Academy, the goal of the Service Learning Program is to deepen a culture of deliberate Christian action and to instill in the school community a commitment to life-long service. Through the collaboration of the Service Learning Program with various academic disciplines, clubs and sports teams, the goal is that this cycle of learning, acting and reflecting, along with a firm commitment to both charity and justice, becomes part of the character of a student of Lourdes Academy, no matter where she goes in life or what career path she chooses.
Service learning is a form of experiential education where learning occurs through a cycle of action and reflection, as students seek to achieve real objectives for the community and deeper understanding and skills for themselves. In the process, students link personal and social development with academic and cognitive development. Experience enhances understanding; understanding leads to more effective action.
The emphasis of the school’s Service Learning Program is on community—actively responding to the identified needs of the community. As a school, we understand that observing the needs of our community, utilizing our faith to make moral judgments and putting it into action allows us to learn about God, ourselves and our world. This knowledge and self-awareness helps us to commit ourselves to being Christ’s presence in our world, working toward a more just and peaceful society.
Components of the Service Learning Program
All service hours are to be work for those who are in need through a non-profit organization and must serve a community in need. Persons in a community in need include those associated with age, social, or economic background, physical, mental, learning, or emotional deprivation, or disabilities. In addition, students may serve the community by being good stewards of God’s creation and advocating for human rights.
Graduation Requirement: Students must complete a minimum of 100 service hours to graduate from Our Lady of Lourdes Academy. The breakdown of these hours is as follows: 20 hours each, in grades 9 and 10; 30 hours each, in grades 11 and 12. Students must complete the majority of their service hours in “direct service” to those in need through a non-profit organization, meaning that the student has direct contact with the people in need for that particular non-profit organization.
Serving local, national and global communities: From mission trips to beach clean ups to serving in their parishes, our students surpass their required service learning hours, highlighting what it means to be a Christian woman in today’s society.
Theological Reflection Essay: Students will be expected to complete a Theological Reflection Essay assigned by their Theology teacher, on the impact their service experience had on them and on the community/individuals they helped. Students will utilize the teachings of the Theology course curriculum to reflect on their service.
Junior Plunge: As part of the school’s theology curriculum, the Plunge experience is a day for students studying Ethics & Morality and Social Justice to be immersed in the needs of Miami-Dade County. As a class, students will tour the facilities of some of the leading non-profit organizations in the county and be involved in directly serving those members of the local community.
Service Learning Events: Students are informed of different service learning opportunities that allows them to serve the community together.
Contact Service Learning
Alina Muir ’91
Service Learning Coordinator
Phone: (305) 667-1623, ext. 157