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Lasell Says Thank You Volunteers Travel to Storm-Ravaged NJ

February 12, 2016

Valentine's Day weekend the student-run volunteer organization Lasell Says Thank You (LSTY) will head to West Long Branch, NJ to support Hurricane Sandy Relief - a trip the group has made several years in a row.

"Hurricane Sandy hit on Oct. 22, 2012. The demand for volunteers at the time was high and the first group to go that summer could see why," Senior Katie Rathbun said. When the media started to pay less attention to the storm and its damages, the volunteers came less frequently as well, she added.

"We have chosen to go back every year to help out because there is still a lot of work that needs to be done," said Rathbun.

This weekend, Feb. 12-15 LSTY will be working on the home of Amparo Southard, a woman in her 60's whose home was severely damaged by the 2012 mega storm. Southard has been living alone since Hurricane Sandy hit - and she is unable to move her belongings on her own. Eleven LSTY volunteers will move her items out of her home on the day they arrive and the rest of the time will involve the demolition of her home with the help from St. Bernard's Project - a local non-profit.

LSTY is currently looking to provide more service trips for students. Everyone is welcome to join LSTY by applying for the service trips and also by joining local trips as well.

Questions can be forwarded to Katie Rathbun at

Lasell College was selected to receive the 2015 Community Engagement Classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching in January 2015. The classification honors excellence in community engagement across multiple sectors of the college campus. Student service is an area of strength for the College, through student-led initiatives and through the College's Center for Community Based Learning and the curriculum.

- Jillian Moreira