Service to the community has long been at the core of Seton Hall's mission. This is a sentiment that extends into the athletics community and is deeply rooted in the experience of a Seton Hall student-athlete. In recent years, there has been a renewed focus among the 14 varsity programs regarding community involvement. Each team has adopted a variety of causes, ensuring that their impact is not limited to the confines of the playing field. Each year, student athletes participate in a number of on-campus and off-site events in support of causes ranging from cancer awareness and fighting hunger to promoting literacy.
For a look inside all of the Pirates' most recent community enrichment projects, click HERE
In keeping in line with Seton Hall University’s Division of Volunteer Efforts’ (DOVE) vision of serving the community, the university, and the student, Seton Hall Athletics and SAAC sponsor many community service events in an effort to support and build a strong relationship with the local neighboring communities. The H.A.L.L. Program breaks down community enrichment into two parts, supporting charities and community interaction. By interacting in the community, the student-athletes are able to build strong relationships with the neighboring communities.
"Our goal as an athletics department isn't only to ensure that our student-athletes improve on the playing fields, but also to grow both academically and spiritually as a person," said Director of Athletics Patrick Lyons. "That personal growth is no more evident than in our devotion to philanthropic causes. Each of our programs has been dedicated to assisting a myriad of charities, which is an undertaking we're very proud of."
The college experience is indeed a formative time in one's life. As such, the implementation of these initiatives is helping to build a foundation for a better tomorrow. Not only do these efforts benefit the community, student-athletes leave Seton Hall with an understanding and appreciation of the true value of service, a lesson that lasts a lifetime.
In the past, some of the charities that Seton Athletics and its teams have actively been engaged in are:
- Play4Kay benefitting the Kay Yow Cancer Foundation
- Samaritan’s Feet Shoe Drive which provides shoes for children all over the world
- Gatorade Pong benefiting Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD)
- Strike Out Cancer, Lace-Up for Pediatric Cancer and many other promotions that also benefit the American Cancer Society
MARY JENNINGS SCHOLARSHIP
Mary Jennings was a Seton Hall women’s soccer player who would have graduated in 2007 with a degree in secondary education and history. In 2006, Jennings, who was just 21 years old, lost her battle with cancer.
From 2007 through 2012, the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee has operated The Mary Jennings Softball Tournament. It raises money for the Mary Jennings Memorial Scholarship. Each year the scholarship is awarded to a student enrolled in the College of Education and Human Services, participates in sports, demonstrates a financial need and displays academic merit who embodies the spirit of life and learning.
The Student-Athlete Advisory Committee will continue to raise funds in honor of Mary Jennings through the women’s soccer program in the future.
‘Reading with the Pirates’ at many local elementary and middle schools in the South Orange area. In this very successful program, student-athletes attend a school and read to the children in their classroom. They also talk to the young students and promote additional reading at home.
‘Grow A Row’ Partnership – Student-athletes plant and grow vegetables for under privileged families in the city districts of New Jersey. Our students take a trip annually to one of their farms to pick the vegetables which exposes some of our students to a much different area of New Jersey as well as their first exposure to farming. We look to expand this relationship and have the students participate in the local farmers markets which deliver these vegetables to the families of Newark and Jersey City.
Peanut Butter & Jelly Challenge for Eva’s Kitchen which provides sandwiches for a local food bank and the ‘One Simple Wish’ Thanksgiving food drive
Pen Pal Partnership with students at St. Francis Xavier School in Newark, NJ
Beginning in the Fall semester, student-athletes volunteer to become pen pals with fourth grade students at St. Francis Xavier for the entire year. They write each other over the course of the entire academic year, thus building a relationship with these young students in the community while promoting reading and writing in young children.
Pen Pal Day is an event in April where students at St. Francis Xavier meet their Seton Hall student-athletes pen pals on campus for a day of fun activities together. The young students at St. Francis Xavier also meet coaches and staff, and are given a tour of campus and the athletics facilities.