UMass Dartmouth Announces Week Dedicated to Civic Engagement to Honor Boston Marathon Bombing Victims, First Responders

Road Race & Civic Engagement Summit Scheduled During Week Leading to Boston Marathon

Today UMass Dartmouth announced a series of events dedicated to civic engagement during the week leading up to the 118th running of the Boston Marathon. The pre-marathon week includes a student organized road race to support the Special Olympics of Massachusetts and the university's annual Civic Engagement Summit focused on the issue of hunger in the community. In addition, two UMass Dartmouth students, who are running in the Marathon, are raising funds for the Krystle Campbell Scholarship, named in honor of the UMass Boston student whose life was lost following the April 15 attack. 

"Our students will once again demonstrate a university-wide commitment to honor the Marathon bombing victims, their families, and our brave first responders," said UMass Dartmouth Chancellor Divina Grossman. "The heart and soul of UMass Dartmouth is learning through action, exhibited through an uncommon character and a commitment to community service." 

"The true spirit of UMass Dartmouth is one of civic engagement and achievement with local, regional, and global impact," said UMass Dartmouth senior and UMass Student Trustee Colin Murphy. "I am proud to be part of a student body, which continues to embrace the responsibility to honor the victims and our brave first responders and on an everyday basis displays an unyielding commitment to give back and contribute to efforts greater than themselves." 

Events Leading to 2014 Boston Marathon: 

Boston Red Sox Opening Day Celebration at UMass Dartmouth 
April 3, 2014, 4:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m. 
The UMass Dartmouth community will come together at the university's Campus Center in celebration of Opening Day for the Boston Red Sox. Silicone bracelets will be sold to raise funds for One Fund Boston. Boston Red Sox mascot Wally the Green Monster will make a special guest appearance on the UMass Dartmouth campus to take part in the festivities, which will include food, games, and other activities, including a Red Sox ticket raffle. 

Ring Road Race for Champions   
April 13, 2014, 10:00 a.m. 
UMass Dartmouth's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) is organizing a 5k cross country style road race through the campus of UMass Dartmouth. The race, now in its third year, is held to raise funds toward Special Olympics of Massachusetts. A moment of silence is scheduled at the UMass Dartmouth Peace Tree prior to the race. In September, students planted a ceremonial peace tree at the UMass Dartmouth Track Field during the opening ceremony of the UMass Dartmouth Shriners Cross Country Invitational. The tree was planted in honor of those killed and wounded in the Boston Marathon bombing and the brave medical and public safety officials who were on scene during the April 15 attack. Public safety officials, who were critical in response to the Marathon Bombing, will be invited to take part in the ceremony prior to the road race. Those interested in participating in the race may register here

Campus-Wide Vigil 
April 15, 2014 
On the day of the one year anniversary, the UMass Dartmouth community will take part in a campus-wide vigil, which will include a moment of silence followed by a ringing of the bells from the university's Robert Karam Campanile. Remarks will be offered from students, faculty, and religious leaders of UMass Dartmouth. 

Civic Engagement Summit 
April 17, 2014, 8:00 a.m.-1:30 p.m., UMass Dartmouth's Woodland Commons 
UMass Dartmouth's Leduc Center for Civic Engagement is hosting its 6th Annual Civic Engagement Summit. This year's focus is on the issue of hunger in the community and will include the participation of freshman, sophomores, and juniors from local high schools in New Bedford, Fall River, Dartmouth, Westport, Fairhaven, and Wareham. The Summit will include Keynote Speaker Carlos Ojeda Jr., student and teacher workshops, and a Stop Hunger Now packaging activity, in which 10,000 meals will be packaged for delivery to support schools and crisis relief programs. 

UMass Dartmouth Section of Prayer Canvas: America 4 Boston 
UMass Dartmouth is partnering with the grass roots effort, Prayer Canvas: America 4 Boston, to complete an amazing project, begun in May 2013, to create a beautiful canvas that honors the Boston Marathon bombing victims and survivors and the city of Boston. UMass Dartmouth is contributing a section of the canvas that will represent the university and its support for those the canvas honors. The canvas has traveled nationwide and is now making its way back home to Boston. The 19,000 square foot project will be displayed on the Boston Common on April 15-16, 2014, and at Fenway Park for the Boston Red Sox game on April 20, 2014. Opportunities for the UMass Dartmouth community to add to the University's section of the canvas will be announced over the next several weeks. 

2014 Boston Marathon 
April 21, 2014 
Two UMass Dartmouth student athletes, who are members of the University's men's and women's track and field teams, plan to run in this year's Boston Marathon. The two student runners, Renee Laurencelle of Tyngsboro, MA and Eric Karstunen of Pembroke, MA, are running to raise money for the Krystle Campbell Scholarship Fund. The scholarship provides monetary support to students across the five campuses of UMass. The scholarship is dedicated to Krystle Campbell, a former student at UMass Boston who tragically succumbed to injuries in the April 2013 bombings at the Boston Marathon. The scholarship was set up by University of Massachusetts Trustee Richard P. Campbell, J.D. Serving as the not for profit partner for the Krystle Campbell Scholarship endowment, the UMass Foundation is responsible for receiving and managing private gifts.  Several UMass Dartmouth student athletes are part of a volunteer team to help Rene and Eric in their fundraising efforts and cheer the runners on the day of the Marathon. 

UMass Dartmouth students have organized candlelight vigils, raised money, and also organized a Torch Relay from Dartmouth to Boston, which raised $7,500 for One Fund Boston.  In the past year, UMass Dartmouth students have dedicated 195,063 hours of community service at a value of $5.3 million to the community. More than 100 UMass Dartmouth faculty members taught 170 service-learning sections this past academic year that exposed close to 5,000 students to service-learning, taking part in projects that benefit our community.  This work has gained national recognition, making UMass Dartmouth one of 12 President Higher Education Honor Roll Finalists out of nearly 4,500 campuses nationwide. Washington Monthly has also ranked UMass Dartmouth at #25 on its list of best master's institutions in the United States, which focuses on the impact a university has on individuals and communities. 

UMass Dartmouth distinguishes itself as a vibrant public university actively engaged in personalized teaching and innovative research, and acting as an intellectual catalyst for regional economic, social, and cultural development. UMass Dartmouth's mandate to serve its community is realized through countless partnerships, programs, and other outreach efforts to engage the community, and apply its knowledge to help address local issues and empower others to facilitate change for all.

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