Community
Service

Giving Back

Deerfield has a tradition of service, and the community service program continues to expand and diversify, offering a range of opportunities to serve the school, local, and even global communities.

Students may volunteer to do community service as their afternoon co-curricular commitment, serving on-site at a service project four days per week. Students involved in the co-curricular community service program have worked at the local animal shelter, nearby farms, a variety of daycare and after-school programs, social service agencies, shelters, and nursing homes. Students also participate in on-campus projects such as the Growing Green program.

There are also service opportunities for students outside of the co-curricular program. Athletic teams, advisor and dorm groups, and clubs can volunteer at Second Helpings, a soup kitchen and food distribution program in nearby Greenfield. Many one-time opportunities and special projects are also offered on a sign-up basis. Deerfield students who want to work with children can do so through the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County program, were about 70 juniors and seniors “adopt” young friends and spend time with them every Friday evening.

During the summer students can apply for financial assistance from special funds to complete community service projects.

Pay it Forward

Deerfield gives all its students access to a number of weekend community service projects. These projects typically last about an hour to an hour and a half, and do not require regular commitment. Students help out with local elderly people who need groups of two through five around their homes doing yard work, clean-up work, gardening, and washing windows. Deerfield groups performing at local nursing homes, elderly centers, etc. if interest persists. Doing community service on weekends can be a fun and rewarding thing to do, and it offers a great study break.

Grants and Awards

Deerfield has special programs and awards outside of the regular programs and projects. These grants are funded due to the generous support of the Cost, Earle/Mendillo and Workman families, who established endowment funds to support the community and public service endeavors of future generations of Deerfield students.

Our Mission

Deerfield Academy has long stressed the idea that those who benefit from Deerfield’s educational opportunities have an ethical obligation to give back to society. The Community Service Program provides students a means to realize the school’s motto, “Be Worthy of Your Heritage,” by serving others and forming meaningful relationships with people outside of the Academy.

The goals of Deerfield Academy’s Community Service Program are to develop partnerships between Deerfield and local agencies that address critical needs in Franklin County, and to provide unique educational opportunities for students and faculty. Community Service participants learn new skills, gain knowledge, and develop a connection to and sense of responsibility toward community.

The Community Service Board is consolidating with the other pillars in the Center for Service and Global Citizenship, going into the 2016-17 school year, forming the CSGC Board.

Frequently Asked Questions

For the past several years, Deerfield has participated in the Green Cup Challenge, an interscholastic energy conservation competition. The school that reduces its kWh usage by the largest percentage wins. The school that reduces GHG emissions by the largest percentage is recognized.

Deerfield runs an on-campus competition during the Green Cup Challenge. Through the month-long challenge, our students follow the success of their dormitory on our energy dashboard and compare their achievements to their on-campus peers and to other schools. The dorm that reduces its energy the most from an established baseline wins a significant prize—an on-campus activity for themselves and another dorm of their choosing, AND a cash prize proportional to dorm size. Because the Green Cup Challenge is a month-long event, we believe that the changed energy consumption practices are more likely to become a learned behavior.

As an SYA member school, Deerfield is able to offer a wide range of study abroad options. In addition to spending school years living and learning languages in foreign countries, Deerfield students can also participate in faculty-led trips during the spring and summer, which allow students to use their language skills in practical settings, under the guidance of Deerfield language faculty.

Think 80|20 is Deerfield’s campus recycling program, which has the goal of changing our habits so that only 20% of our campus waste ends up in a landfill. Think 80|20 signs are posted in all campus buildings and on all recycling/compost/landfill receptacles to educate people on how to dispose of their waste appropriately.

The Energy Dashboard displays daily, weekly, and annual energy consumption information in a building-by-building format. In addition, you can track the performance of solar power systems on two buildings. The Dashboard is an integral part of coursework in many classrooms, and it is wildly popular during the Green Cup Challenge each year.

Environmental proctors are student leaders in sustainability efforts at Deerfield Academy. Working with the Sustainability Coordinator, e-proctors participate in a variety of projects, including dormitory recycling and energy conservation challenges, and promote sustainability around campus.

Upperclassmen can apply to become e-proctors each fall. E-proctors are required to attend biweekly meetings, be involved in one “project” per term, post sustainability announcements and educational materials in dorms, and be a role model for their peers. They will play an important part in helping Deerfield to be environmentally sustainable. A complete list of e-proctors’ duties is available online.

A variety of faculty-led trips allow students to travel under the guidance of a Deerfield teacher without having to spend the entire year living and studying in a foreign country. These trips, which usually take place during spring break or the summer, often include a homestay, and are a great way to improve language skills and experience a different culture.

Language requirements vary by program. Consult individual program websites for more information.

Deerfield’s study abroad partner schools offer a comparable set of courses, so students can fulfill Academy requirements with little or no penalty to their academic progress. All students who are thinking about studying abroad should meet with Director of Studies Lydia Hemphill for assistance in planning their study abroad experience.

Study abroad is available to all students from their sophomore to senior years, although typically students who choose to go abroad will do so during their junior year.

Deerfield has a wide net of international associations, and therefore has the ability to offer a broad spectrum of study abroad opportunities. Semesters abroad in Jordan, Costa Rica, and the Bahamas are highlights of Deerfield’s international programs, which also include Round Square service trips, a variety of School Year Abroad opportunities, exchange programs, and faculty-led trips to places such as the Dominican Republic, Tanzania, Colombia and China.

The Center for Service and Global Citizenship offers two types of grants: CSGC Grants and Micro-Grants.

CSGC Grants: These grants invite Deerfield Academy students to serve others during their summer months. The grants are offered through the generosity of the Cost, Earle, Mendillo and Workman families, and the funds are provided to honor the call in our Mission Statement:

A vibrant, ethical community that embraces diversity, the Academy prepares students for leadership in a rapidly changing world that requires global understanding, environmental stewardship, and dedication to service.

Micro-Grants: Through the CSGC, students can apply to up to $150 to fund student-generated projects on and off campus during the school year.

The annual Spring Term Community Event, hosted at the Deerfield Academy Track, draws the largest number of students to any one service event.  Each year, the CSGC Student Board determines which organization will be the focus of our fundraising and awareness efforts, and the spring term event is the culmination of this year-long effort.  In the recent past, the American Cancer Society and Cancer Connection of Northampton have been the organizations the Deerfield Academy community has supported.  Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County is the service program with the largest participation, calling on approximately seventy juniors and seniors to serve as “Bigs” who spend Friday evenings with a child from Franklin County to serve as mentors and role models. Deerfield Academy also hosts several Red Cross blood drives, which collect blood for use in local hospitals, and students participate as donors and volunteers.

Students can pursue service as a co-curricular option, engaging in community service projects one to four days a week. Projects include Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County, Second-Helpings (a food kitchen and food distribution program), Musica Franklin (music instruction to middle-school students), and after-school programs at two local elementary schools. In addition, students can engage in service abroad in the Cambiando Vidas program in the Dominican Republic, and a variety of other CSGC service trips. Students have the opportunity to design their own programs in their local community and abroad, utilizing funding from the Charles Cost Award, or David Workman Grant to be used in the summer or during the school year.  Every athletic team also participates in at least one day of local community service at some point during their season.

Deerfield’s varied and expansive community service programs require a great deal of planning and organization. Most programs are planned through the CSGC Student Board. The board handles all event planning and fundraising and serves as a liaison between the school and other Franklin County and regional service organizations.

The legacy of Frank L. Boyden means that service is an intrinsic part of a Deerfield education. Every year students are reminded of the words of Mr. Boyden: “The test of the worth of any school is, in the last analysis, the record of her alumni… it is our sincere hope that the tradition of service instilled and nurtured here… may endure always to the lasting benefit of the country and the world.” With such a powerful call for service at the heart of its mission, Deerfield places a strong emphasis on service in all its forms. As such, there are a plethora of service opportunities at Deerfield, and students are enthusiastically encouraged to participate as much as they can.

Contact the Center for Service and Global Citizenship

413-774-1435

Boyden Library

7 Boyden Lane, PO Box 87
Deerfield, MA 01342