NWTC students learn importance of giving back through Service Learning Program

Local News

LEDGEVIEW, Wis. (WFRV) Students at NWTC learn much about their chosen career in the classroom. But as Kris Schuller reports often there are lessons to learn by heading out into the community.

At Scray Hill Park in Ledgeview masonry students from NWTC are hard at work. Out of the classroom and here on an active job site building dugouts at Mulva Family Fields for the non- profit group De Pere Baseball.

“It feels like you’re out working in the real world, it doesn’t even feel like you’re in school anymore,” said masonry student Trevor Leroy.

These students are here because of NWTC’s Service Learning Program, an effort where instructors like David Pryes look for organizations in need and provide in-kind donations. In this case a workforce, to build four dugouts from scratch while getting real life on the job training.

“I love the fact that we get to help out the community and the students really take pride in doing this job properly,” said Pryes.

“We get the students out, we get them involved in the community, we work with nonprofits,” said Apprenticeship Manager Todd Kiel.

Kiel says nearly all of the 200 disciplines at the college strive to include service learning in their programs.

“To build that sense of community and to show students that there is a purpose beyond just what you see in school and beyond yourself,” Kiel said.

Pryes learned of the need for help here through his contacts in the industry.

“They pointed me in this direction and I said OK, this is something we’re going to be able to do,” Pryes said.

And now he has this outdoor classroom where his students learn how to place cement blocks and how to give back.

“People don’t have to pay for it, we’re donating our time, but we get to learn as we’re doing it too. It’s pretty cool doing that,” Leroy said.

“Giving back is part of my nature and should be part of everybody’s nature,” said student Gage Edwards.

“They can drive past this forever and say I helped do that while in school – so it’s kind of a landmark for them going forward,” Kiel said.

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