Students, Faculty to Participate in Community Service Fund RaceBy Orli G. Bahcall
Associate News Editor
MIT students, faculty, and corporation members will take part Saturday in the 16th annual MITCommunity Service Fund road race, the CSF's biggest event of the year.
The four-mile road race will begin at the Walter C. Wood Sailing Pavilion and end at McDermott Court. Registration for the race will be at 9 a.m. on Saturday at McDermott Court; the race itself will start at 9:30 a.m.
Every year a member of the Cambridge City council is asked to attend and start the race. This year, council member Anthony Gallucio will have that honor.
Proceeds from the event go to the Community Service Fund, which is currently holding its annual fund-raising campaign. Drawing prizes were donated by New Balance, Toscanini's Ice Cream, La Verde's Market, and Newbury Comics.
CSFfunds community service
"The road race is a highlight of the campaign, an attempt to rally people behind the idea of the fund, get together for a nice Saturday morning of recreation, and celebrating springtime," said Assistant for Community Relations in the President's Office Paul Parravano, the CSF secretary.
The CSF directly supports both MITagency and student community service projects based in Cambridge.
The CSF encourages students to participate in community service events. Undergraduates in particular should realize that if they have good ideas for community projects in Cambridge that the CSF is a potential source of funding, Parravano said.
Some programs at MIT funded by the CSF include the annual City Days event, Links, and Keys. The CSF also funds programs in the Cambridge area like homeless shelters and tutoring and homework centers where students perform community service.
In general, educational programs and some homeless shelter programs are supported, Parravano said. The CSF board of trustees meets twice a year to consider funding proposals.
"Our mission here is education, so the board seems to lean heavily toward projects based on support activities like Links, Keys, and others in which our students go into local schools and try to get them excited about science," Parravano said.
The CSF makes its funding decisions based on how much money it raises during its fund-raising period.
CSF raises annually raises about $4,000 to $5,000 dollars, although that figure has gone down in recent years. "The goal this year is to increase awareness and get that number up," Parravano said.
Students should be proactive
Parravano stressed the importance of MITstudents' participating in community service.
These service projects provide "a very meaningful way in which MIT can make a significant contribution to the people of Cambridge and to the neighborhoods around us," he said. Such participation fosters a "terrific relationship" with organizations that serve the community, he said.
It also "reminds us that we are surrounded by opportunities to help people in need, whether it be helping to enhance educational opportunity or to combat the problems of homelessness," he said. "Our role is to share some of our extraordinary resources that our student body brings to campus," Parravano said.
The MIT Science Expo for Cambridge elementary and middle school students held here Wednesday was sponsored by the Public Service Center, and it is an example of the type of project CSF encourages [see "Institute Plays Host to Science Expo, Fair," page 10].
The science fair provided an "exquisite opportunity for students to come to campus... and further their interest in science and technology," Parravano said.