Hempstead, NY – More than 170 Hofstra University student-athletes were part of the more than 300 University student volunteers who participated in the University’s annual Shake-A-Rake program, sponsored by the Office of Off-Campus Living and Commuting Student Services, on Saturday, November 15.
The annual Shake-A-Rake program aims to connect Hofstra University with the surrounding community. Along with the cleanup of neighborhood lawns, student volunteers also helped out in a garden and a community center. With more than 300 student volunteers, this year’s Shake-A-Rake program was the largest in school history.
Hofstra student-athletes and members of Greek life, international students and club leaders traveled around Uniondale and Hempstead to rake 51 lawns for elderly and disabled residents. Students from the Center for Civic Engagement also helped plant 550 tulip bulbs in the neighboring streets around the University.
“The sun is shining, it’s nice outside, and the whole field hockey team is here. It feels great to give back,” Jonel Boileau, a senior international business major and captain of the Pride Field Hockey team commented.
The entire Hofstra Baseball team, one of 14 Pride teams participating in Shake-A-Rake, joined together to clean up an acre-and-a-half of land at the John J. Byrne Community Center in Uniondale. When asked if the day was enjoyable, junior industrial engineering major and Pride catcher Christopher Hardardt said “I like raking leaves. It’s just fun to me. Plus, I get to work with a great group of guys.”
The Hofstra Department of Athletics received a Good Neighbor Award last year for its continuing service.
Beautifying the local area is another important part of the day’s engagement. Hofstra University donated 550 tulip bulbs that were planted in certain parts of the Uniondale area. Volunteer groups met up at Capital One Bank on Front Street to begin their planting activities.
In less than two hours, each lawn, garden, and community center had been raked completely. Some community members came outside with the students to help. This year’s event was very much a bonding experience for Hofstra and the local area.