Posted on Monday, October 16, 2023
Westminster College students involved in the Buzzfeed cluster course served as video volunteers for the Bags & Blessings 5K Run/Walk in Beaver County in September.
Runners and walkers of the event—which was sponsored by Bags & Blessings, a non-profit charity established to help bring hope and love to those undergoing cancer treatments—shared with students their stories about why they were participating.
The recorded interviews will be shared with Bags & Blessings for use on social media.
“I thought this experience was very heartwarming and it was super interesting to hear from the participants of the race. Hearing stories of what some of those people have overcome and faced in their lives is truly amazing,” said Adam Coppins, a junior environmental studies major from Lewiston, N.Y.
Students worked under the guidance of Bradley Weaver, lecturer in Westminster’s School of Communication and an instructor in the Buzzfeed cluster course, which links environmental science and digital social media courses.
“I was very proud to see our students follow the protocols we mapped out in class about being empathic, understanding boundaries, asking open-ended questions and being supportive in recruiting people to share their reasons for running and supporting the organization,” Weaver said.
The project will connect to environmental science later this semester, when students will help bottle Westminster Bee Company’s honey harvest and share with Bags & Blessings to be included in care packages for cancer patients. Students will deliver the honey and conduct another set of interviews with volunteers.
The idea for this cluster course is attributed to Dr. Patrick Krantz, associate professor for the environment and director of the outdoor laboratory, and Dr. Terri Lennox, professor of computer science emerita.
Krantz said incorporating the honey element into the cluster course was inspired by a friend undergoing chemotherapy.
The raw, local honey produced at Westminster’s apiary is free from harmful chemicals and safe for patients undergoing treatment, Krantz said.
To learn more about the Buzzfeed cluster course, please contact Weaver at email@example.com.