As the academic year comes to an end and seniors reflect on their time at Lehigh, many will remember the impact they made on the Lehigh community by their involvement in campus organizations, clubs and sports teams.
Seniors’ time at Lehigh has been marked by accomplishments and connections through their engagement and participation.
“My experience at Lehigh would not have been the same had I not joined the Global Union,” said Miriam Soriano Gregorio, ’20, president of the Global Union. “It has shaped a large part of who I am.”
The Global Union, an organization that involves over 45 student clubs at Lehigh, works to foster global awareness on campus.
Soriano Gregorio became president of the Global Union in fall 2019 and said her motivation is to connect people to other cultures besides their own.
“(The Global Union) has allowed me to meet many people across different departments, majors and cultural backgrounds,” Soriano Gregorio said. “It has really allowed me to make some amazing friendships and get to know so many more people on campus.”
Many sports teams at Lehigh are involved with programs in the South Side community to foster connections off campus.
Autumn Ryan, ’20, a member of the women’s lacrosse team, said her most memorable moment was the Adopt-a-Family event during her sophomore year.
The women’s lacrosse team partners with Adopt-a-Family every year to bring positivity to local families who may be struggling from low socioeconomic status during the holidays.
“This event is something that I really looked forward to every year because the happiness and gratitude that you see from these families is something really special,” Ryan said.
Being able to help a struggling local family is something she said she’ll always remember.
Joseph Recupero, ’20, credits his involvement with the Community Service Office for allowing him to make lifelong connections and to help the local community and other struggling communities.
Recupero began working with SERVE, the CSO’s service trip program, as a first-year student. The SERVE program is a week-long service trip dedicated to helping struggling communities.
His first service trip to North Carolina with Habitat for Humanity made him realize how special it was to help make a change in that community.
“I got to paint the walls of a house that was going to be owned by someone that we met,” Recupero said. “Seeing the impact made by having 10 volunteers paint a room in an hour, versus having that one person take 10 hours to paint their own room, was really cool.”
He eventually took on leadership roles, and he ran the program throughout his sophomore and junior years.
The CSO also partners with off-campus organizations such as New Bethany Ministries, a non-profit organization, to help them further their goals, Recupero said.
“Being able to show other people how important community service can be for them, on top of breaking down barriers between Lehigh and the community, has been awesome,” Recupero said.