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March 27, 2010

DWU plans Day of Service to mark 125th year

Austin Kaus • The Daily Republic

When people think of birthday parties, they generally conjure up images of cake, candles and festive hats.

But staff and students at Dakota Wesleyan University in Mitchell plan to celebrate the institution’s 125th birthday this year with a day’s worth of public service.

Lori Essig, vice president of university relations at DWU, said April 27 — the day the original DWU charter was signed in 1885 — has been designated as a Day of Service for the campus.

“We’re going to go out and serve the community,” Essig said.

Essig said some students and faculty will go to public parks and beaches in the Mitchell area to perform cleaning and maintenance work.

The football team and coaches will assist businesses on Mitchell’s Main Street. Soccer teams and coaches will clear rocks and debris from fields at the Pepsi-Cola Soccer Complex, while other groups will volunteer their time at the Mitchell Area Safehouse, DWU’s Huron Community Campus and local interstate exits.

The announcement came after a breakfast Friday morning hosted by the university that brought community members together to hear DWU representatives speak about 125 years of education and service.

“There are not too many things in South Dakota … that are 125 years old,” DWU President Bob Duffett told the approximately 100 people in attendance Friday morning.

As the sun could be seen slowly rising through the windows of the Sherman Center, Duffett thanked the community for their support of the university.

“If we were to go back 125 years, it basically would be a group of businessmen and women from Mitchell … that clearly gave the impetus to start Dakota Wesleyan University,” Duffett said. “We are here because of people like you.”

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