MIAC VOLLEYBALL 2018 Community Engagement Projects

Since 2011, MIAC volleyball teams have made a commitment to each participate in at least one service project every season. Augsburg head coach Jane Becker originally proposed the idea because of her positive experience participating in service projects with her teammates while she was a MIAC student-athlete. Becker attributes the sustained success of this annual initiative to the commitment from her colleagues.

" I believe that every coach in this Conference truly has a servant heart. They are all strongly connected to the communities that [they] work in, and have a commitment to the full development of our student-athletes. Hopefully almost a decade of service to our communities has made an equally positive impact on our communities and our student-athletes." -Jane Becker, Augsburg head volleyball coach

The theme of this year's service project was "Children in Crisis- Food Accessibility, Homelessness, and Sickness". While the theme guided many teams, others chose to participate in projects that are personal to their teams. Next year's theme will be "Empowering Girls Through Sports."


The Bethel volleyball team assisted with the "Coaches Against Cancer" partnership with Randy Shaver's Cancer Research and Community Fund. The squad served as the donation team and went out into the crowd throughout a BU home football game to collect the donations fans. "We do this in large part because of our love and deep respect for our Assistant Strength Coach, Larry Herm, who is also a Bethel assistant football coach, the coordinator of the Tackle Cancer game on our campus, and a cancer survivor," Bethel volleyball coach Gretchen Hunt explained.


The Gustavus volleyball team conducted their annual pen pal program with elderly tenants at the Ecumen Senior Living Center in St. Peter. The players wrote letters back and forth with a resident throughout the season and then met their pen pal for the first time the morning of their last regular season home match. The players spent time with their pen pals at their homes before the pen pals attended the Gusties' match later that day.


On September 6th, the St. Thomas volleyball team participated in the University of Minnesota Masonic Children’s Hospital blanket give-away event. Prior to this event, UST had a blanket-tying get-together and made more than 25 fleece blankets to donate to the hospital. These blankets mean a great amount to the families and children, as they offer comfort when families need it most. Words cannot describe how joyful and heartwarming it was for the players to see the biggest smile appear on a child’s face as they picked out their special blanket.

The Tommies hope to continue throughout the year to raise money to make and donate more blankets for their next blanket-giveaway at the Masonic Children’s Hospital, as well as participating in other volunteering events.


The Auggies participated in two different service-learning opportunities, including a session at Feed My Starving Children (FMSC) and serving four meals in small groups at the Minneapolis Crisis Nursery.

"The FMSC project was a fun way for the team to spend time together on one of the first days during preseason," head coach Jane Becker said. "The setting allowed our team to really use our competitiveness for good as we competed to pack as many boxes as possible for children around the world."

The Minneapolis Crisis Nursery brought the idea of hunger a bit closer to Augsburg's backyard as the team served meals to local youth. The squad split up into position groups, allowing each player to participate in the making and serving of meals. Each group was given a meal plan, recipes, and the groceries to make a meal for children. They then served the meal and had some time to eat, talk, and engage with the children. The Auggies plan to make this an annual tradition.

Augsburg also collected food items for the Waite House, a local food shelf. Waite House programs integrate civic engagement with human services to bring about positive change within its core focus areas of Employment and Training, Health and Nutrition, Youth Development, and Basic Needs.



On August 26th, the St. Olaf volleyball team went the Ronald McDonald house, where they provided and cooked brunch. The team had a great time cooking together in the Ronald McDonald kitchen.

Saint Benedict

Over fall break, the St. Ben's volleyball team made blankets to donate to the People Serving People shelter in Minneapolis.


The Hamline volleyball team volunteered at the Sheridan Story in Roseville. While at the Sheridan Story, the team helped package bags of food to be slipped into students’ backpacks by their teachers. The organization helps provide students in need with food to eat over the weekend.

St. Catherine

St. Kate's volleyball team took a break from preseason training to spend time at Women's Advocates in St. Paul. Women's Advocates is a safe place where victims and survivors of all backgrounds and cultures can escape domestic violence and begin to heal. The team pitched in by cleaning the kitchen and cafeteria, transporting items into recycling, and pulling weeds in the yard.


The Saint Mary's volleyball team completed a Lasallian Day of Service. The Cardinals donated their time in the local community by assisting with yard work.


On August 26th, the Macalester volleyball team volunteered at the Kids in Need Foundation. The team helped prep backpacks and supplies that will go to educators and children around the country.


This past August, the Carleton volleyball team volunteered at Feed My Starving Children in Eagan, MN. They packed more than 45 boxes in two hours for children in Haiti.


The Concordia volleyball team volunteered at their local “Cobber Kids” daycare, playing with and working together on activities with the kids.


St. Olaf
St. Thomas

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