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A chance to give back

[ESS Supplies Drive]
Education Students' Society members, from left, Amber O'Reilly, Allie Minuk, Alisha Esteves, Christopher Suppa and Angie Allen, hold some of the supplies collected by their fellow students and members of the Faculty of Education. The supplies have been donated to four elementary schools in Kingston. (University Communications)

Looking to give back to the schools and teachers they worked with during their practicums, the Education Students' Society recently held a school supply drive.

ESS members collected books, art supplies, pencils, pens and more to donate to four local schools, explains Allie Minuk, Concurrent Education Representative on the ESS.

With the support of the Faculty of Education’s practicum office, the ESS selected Kingston community schools that have high needs, including a growing population of Syrian refugees and their families.

“We really see firsthand the lack of resources some schools in our community have while teachers take us into their classrooms, expecting nothing in return,” Ms. Minuk says. “They take their time and they teach us, shape us, molding us as educators and we see them day after day reach into their own pockets and wallets for supplies. That’s a life we are all about to begin.”

The drive was timed with the conclusion of studies for the concurrent education program with the hope that extra supplies might be found as students move out. The drive will pick up once again in June as consecutive education students complete their studies. Faculty members and staff also contributed to the drive.

The drive was geared toward specific requests from the participating schools, Ms. Minuk says. Skipping ropes were donated to one school that does not have a gym, while another requested art supplies. Another asked for books and more than 200 were collected.