125,000 Hours of Service 

Since our earliest days as Seattle Seminary, SPU has been committed to serving the community. Now we’re extending this idea even further with our goal of documenting 125,000 Hours of Service during the 125th anniversary year.

Throughout the year, we’ll track service hours contributed by students, faculty, staff, alumni, and parents.

Volunteer Hours thermometer

Service hours will funnel through SPU events and organizations such as SPRINT, CityQuest, the Perkins Center, and Latreia. Other hours will be recorded through academic internships and clinical practicums including nursing, teacher education, marriage and family therapy, and clinical and I/O psychology. Finally, we will also track individual or group alumni/staff/parent volunteer efforts in their churches or communities. 

Track your hours and send them to us through our the “Submit Volunteer Hours” page. Send along a photo as well and we'll include it below alongside the other students, alumni, faculty, and staff who are doing their part to give back to the community and reach our goal.

Meanwhile, consult our events page for coming events you can get involved in.

Tim Nelson ’87, Christmas tree sale volunteer

Academic Year 2016-17 | 30 Hours | SPU Alumnus, Faculty Member

I’m a “tree guy” for the annual PTA Christmas Tree Sale at Green Lake Elementary. Tree guys open the lot at the beginning of the day and close it down at night. We are knowledgeable about the trees and the sales process, and we handle the heavy-lifting part of customer service.

Hellen Benoit-Schultz ’76 , food bank volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 200 Hours | SPU Alumna

I volunteer at the Mt. View Community Fish Food Bank in Edgewood, Washington, about 20 hours each month. I coordinate the produce distribution effort.

Lorelle Jabs, track meet volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 15 Hours | SPU Faculty

I’m a volunteer at Ingraham High School track meets.

Kimberly Segall, international volunteer for social justice

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 180 Hours | SPU Faculty

· I held a Refugee Forum and Diversity Leadership Training for the SPU Student Leadership Development Committee, Urban Involvement groups, and the general campus. Probably 150 students attended a total of three meetings. I worked with Caenisha Warren in SPU’s John Perkins Center to create a social justice video for the event on the website. I also held three meetings with Khawla Hadi, Iraqi-American translator and counselor at Lutheran Services. I met with Kids4Peace Director Jordan Goldwyth and Hannah Hochkeppel, and set up meetings with the Council on American–Islamic Relations for Muslim civil rights at a Seattle University event to discuss SPU student internships and a video project on filming Seattle Muslim voices. I created talks for students and worked with student leaders on a Power Point presentation.
· I volunteered at a refugee camp outside of Athens, Greece, where we distributed food cards, worked with a translator on a Caritas Catholic Relief project, and organized projects for refugee children from Syria and Iraq.  
· I worked with Kids for Peace, organizing internship possibilities for SPU students, including attending, setting up, and moving supplies for a Martin Luther King Jr. Day event.
· I volunteered for one week at an orphanage in Gugulethu Township in South Africa and set up a service project for SPU students.
· I assisted a Cape Town trauma center, specializing in working with trauma survivors and teen gangs, in their efforts to organize internships for more SPU volunteers.
· Twice this year, my family and I participated in Teen Feed at our church, University Congregational United Church of Christ. We made food for homeless teens near the University of Washington.
· I participated in food packing for Tent City three times this year.
· I volunteered at the Muslim Association of Puget Sound (MAPS), supporting their open house and standing with signs of support after the racist attack on their sign in November.
· I created a service project with Pastor Monwabisi Mgogi in Khayaletshia for a South Africa study abroad program.
· I raised money and brought kids clothing to the Caritas Refugee Relief Center in Athens, Greece, and reported back on the project in 2017. I also facilitated a student internship to the Caritas refugee center with SPU students.
· I’m working with the vice provost, dean, and a team of faculty to start a new social justice/cultural studies major on campus in response to students’ campaign for more relevant diversity courses. The major meets all Cultural Understanding and Engagement requirements.
· I’m mentoring SPU AMES scholars for retention of students of color.
· I gave a presentation on Middle East Studies Films for Peace series. I interviewed former refugees and helped raise money for a community member whose store was attacked as part of a hate crime.
· I met with Consolee Nishimwe, a survivor of the Rwandan genocide, to see if she might speak at SPU. She is currently speaking at schools in the Seattle Public School District. I also connected her with some school contacts in New York, which is her home city now.
· I set up service learning project for students at Mama Rosie's HIV/AIDS clinic for teenagers in South Africa.

Grace Parson ‘04, Court Appointed Special Advocate

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 160 Hours | SPU Alumna

I’m a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) in Hood River, Oregon. I advocate in court for children in foster care. I give a voice to children within the system – a system that often forgets about those most vulnerable.

Bethany Davis ’08, worship ministry leader

Academic Year 2016-17 | 120 Hours | SPU Staff and Alumna

I lead a worship ministry at One Hope Foursquare Church in Kent, Washington.

Jenn Wilson, high school bible study leader

Academic Year 2016-17 | 50 Hours | SPU Staff Member

I’m a high school leader at Canyon Hills Community Church. I lead a group of high school freshmen girls in a bible study each week.

Kyle Brown ‘15, Sunday school teacher

Academic Year 2016-17 | 80 Hours | SPU Alumnus, Staff Member, and Donor

I’m a volunteer Sunday school teacher at Westside Church for kids ages 2–13. Every Sunday, I work with a small group of fourth and fifth graders. I teach a lesson based around a Bible story, and then we play a game, talk about their past and upcoming weeks, and pray for each other. It’s the most fulfilling service I have ever found.

Marjorie Crofts ’56, volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 300 hours | SPU alumna

I volunteer with Soroptimist International of Camas-Washougal. We have been organizing estate sales for Camas and Washougal for 22 years. About 8-12 of us work Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m., usually for a month for each sale. We begin in March and quit in October. We have a two-day sale (Friday and Saturday 8 a.m.-4 p.m.) with a half-price sale, Saturday 12-4 p.m. We have 450 people on our email list. We send them quite an extensive list of what’s in each sale. The men all come when there are lots of old tools. We wash everything. We have 100 card tables, lots of linen (inside) and plastic (outside) tablecloths, and cans and boards to make “shelves” to display more. We have a lot of fun working for them. And we have the house clean and empty. What doesn’t sell goes to a nice second hand store in Vancouver (dishes, some furniture), Habitat for Humanity, or Goodwill. What we make (45 percent now) we give to local women to go to college. Many of these are working and supporting children as they finish college. I’d say I put in 300 hours a year and love it.

Jacob Redding ’13, ‘15, YoungLife volunteer

Academic Year 2016-17 | 100 Hours | SPU Alumnus, Adjunct Faculty, and Doctoral Student

I volunteer with YoungLife in West Seattle, an organization dedicated to sharing the truth of God’s love with adolescents. We work with high school students from multicultural backgrounds, diverse cultural communities, and economically-depressed areas.

Daniel Common ’01, worship team member

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 120 Hours | SPU Alumnus

I am a worship team member at Bethany Community Church in Seattle where I volunteer 12-15 hours per month.

Seattle Pacific Seminary Students’ “Contextual Education”

January—March, 2017 | 1,520 hours | 16 SPU Seminarians

Each quarter, Seattle Pacific Seminary students enroll in what’s called "Contextual Education" or "field education." In addition to receiving academic credit, students participate in supervised ministry, which is carried out in a local congregation, clinical setting (hospital, prison, etc.), parachurch agency, or church-related nonprofit organization. This experience is a key component to both the MDiv and MA in Theology degrees.

SPU School Counseling Students Practicum/Internships

September—March, 2016-17 | 8,400 hours | 36 Graduate CPY Students

Students in the School Counseling (SCO) program (master of education degree), participate in two volunteer programs within a school setting. The first is the Education Block, where students gain practical experience about school life and the issues facing classroom teachers. The second is the internship, an integrative experience in which students conduct supervised counseling in a school setting over the course of an entire school year (three quarters). The internship requires the cooperative efforts of the student, a faculty supervisor from the SPU School of Education, and an approved school district site supervisor. The photo (left) shows students in EDCO 6670 Introduction to School Counseling, one of the first classes in the SCO program.

SPU Principal Certification Internships

September—March, 2016-17 | 12,960 hours | 32 Principal Certificate Candidates

The Principal internship allows students to engage in leadership and administrative activities under the supervision of a mentor principal or assistant principal in a school setting. Over the course of a full school year, students acquire and practice skills that are crucial to future success as a school leader.

SPU Superintendent Certification Internships

September—March, 2016-17 | 1,440 hours | 12 Superintendent Certificate Candidates

Students in the Superintendent Certification program are required to complete a field experience over two years to qualify for a Superintendent Certificate. The field-based experience blends theory and practical course applications into actual leadership experiences. These internship experiences are guided by a designated district supervisor and overseen by SPU educational leadership faculty.

Clint Kelly, church volunteer, blood and platelet donor

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 120 Hours | SPU Staff Member

At Westminster Presbyterian Church, I serve as an elder, concert coordinator, Missions Committee chairman, Historic Restoration publicity chair, and adult Sunday school teacher. Also, I am a blood and platelet donor with Bloodworks NW.

Corbett ‘97 and Amanda Stubbert ’95, volunteers

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 150 Hours | SPU Alumni

We volunteer with WorldCOMP Kenya (an umbrella organization serving Kenyan-led programs from medical camps to schools for children living in the slums to a training center for widows). Amanda is on WorldComp’s board, and Corbett’s service includes trips to Kenya where he supports construction projects and relationship building. Amanda also serves on the leadership team at Westside Church, helping with most of the special events.

Master's Degree Nursing Students Clinical Practicum

September—March, 2016-17 | 9,174 hours | 25 Grad Nursing Students

SPU’s graduate nursing program is intensively hands-on. Students are assigned a clinical preceptor (mentor) who enhances their access to patients and settings, clinical skill development, role acquisition, socialization, and professional transition into the world of advanced nursing practice. Clinical rotations are varied and provide a wide array of experiences in hospitals, schools, clinics, community agencies, and professional organizations throughout the Seattle area.

Undergraduate Nursing Students Clinical Practicum

September—March, 2016-17 | 29,400 hours | 128 Undergrad Nursing Students

SPU nursing students spend a significant number of hours in hands-on clinical practice at a broad range of venues throughout the metropolitan Seattle area. What’s learned in the classroom is put into practice in local hospitals and health care agencies, working directly with clients. Clinical rotations are varied and provide a wide array of experiences. In fact, SPU has working relationships with more than 150 practice partners, including Harborview Medical Center, Seattle Children’s Hospital, Seattle Public Schools, and the University of Washington Medical Center.

Medical Family Therapy Students Externships

June—March, 2016-17 | 2,100 Hours | 6 MDFT Students

As part of their certificate training in Medical Family Therapy (MDFT), students are required to complete an “externship” in an outpatient medical clinic. These SPU “externs” provide a range of psychosocial services, training, and support for patient/family and medical teams. They also develop and implement assessment and treatment plans that address a broad range of psychosocial and psychiatric concerns.

SPU Clinical Psychology Students Practicum/Internships

September—March, 2016-17 | 18,000 hours | 34 Graduate CPY Students

As part of their PhD program, students in clinical psychology participate in practicum and internship training experiences. In practicum settings, they establish therapeutic relationships with clients and patients which includes developing a wide range of skills related to evidence-based psychotherapy. In the year-long internship placement, students refine and further develop their abilities to independently apply these intervention skills in professional medical, hospital, and outpatient settings. The beneficiaries of these experiences are not only the students themselves, but also the clients that they serve. Practicum sites include Swedish Family Medicine and Swedish Primary Care, Madigan Army Medical Center, Lakeside Center for Autism, and the Child Study and Treatment Center. Some of the internship sites are American Lake VA, University of New Mexico Medical Center, Virginia Commonwealth University Department of Pediatrics, and Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

Seattle Pacific Seminary Students “Contextual Education”

September—December, 2016 | 1,520 hours | 16 SPU Seminarians

Each quarter, Seattle Pacific Seminary students enroll in what’s called "Contextual Education," where they undertake a variety of administrative and ministry tasks in churches throughout the Seattle area. One example is Brandon Bleek, who currently serves at University Presbyterian Church. His primary responsibilities include care for the church's missionaries, mission leaders, and small group facilitators. In addition, he oversees short-term mission implementation, Sunday liturgist duties, and general care of congregants. Currently, he's deeply involved in a Lent initiative to challenge the congregation to look at the multi-ethnic family of God and how to better reflect and engage it. Photo: Brandon (far right) taking a break with team members on a missions project in Tijuana, Mexico.

Hanna Roseen, Green Seattle Day volunteer

November 2016 | 3 hours | SPU Student

I participated in Green Seattle Day by planting trees and spreading mulch in Discovery Park.

Urban Involvement

September – December, 2016 l 4,361 Hours l 113 SPU Students

Urban Involvement connects SPU students to a variety of community organizations through weekly service teams and quarterly immersion experiences. For Autumn Quarter 2016, 113 SPU students served alongside ten partner organizations and programs: Bride Care Center, EYFO, Cultural Companions, Neighborhood House, Pike Place Community Dinners, Union Gospel Mission (UGM) Hope Place Elementary, UGM White Center Remix, UGM Youth Services, UI Emerald City Commons, and Rainier Beach High School.


September – December, 2016 l 420 Hours l 60 SPU Students

Latreia, coordinated through the John Perkins Center, is a resource program for SPU students interested in serving in Seattle. Latreia matches students' passions, focus of study, or general interests with local agencies looking for volunteers. Service opportunities may be one-time projects or long-term experiences. For Autumn Quarter 2016, Latreia sponsored two service days involving 60 SPU students who participated in eight different sites around Seattle.

SPU administrative leaders serve at FareStart

February 2, 2017 | 54 Hours | SPU Administrators

On Thursday, February 2, nine Seattle Pacific University administrators, including President Dan Martin, volunteered at FareStart’s Guest Chef Night. Since 1994, this program has raised more than $4.5 million to support FareStart’s student culinary job training and placement services for youth and adults coming from challenging circumstances. Guest Chef Night is a celebration of the organization’s graduates, and the students and chefs who worked to prepare the meal. On the night the SPU team served, Matt Lewis of Café Roux was the guest chef. From that meal, $6,337 dollars were earned, including $4,709 from the food and beverages, and an additional $1,628 from donations—all this coming from 137 diners. This amount covers one student in the youth program, plus counseling and life skills instruction for one adult student. Those from SPU who served at FareStart included: President Martin, Jeff Van Duzer, Louise Furrow, Gaile Moe, Margaret Brown, Katy Tangenberg, Michael Paulus, Jennifer Standlee, and John Glancy.

Bob Rorabaugh ‘69, teacher assistant, library volunteer, church volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 593 Hours | SPU Alumnus

I'm "the tool guy," overseeing a team of eight other "old guys who like tools” at Helping Hands Ministries International Thrift Store. We receive, clean, sort, repair, price, and place tools for sale, adding yet another revenue stream to assist the poorest of the poor in northern Peru, fire victims in Snohomish County, and also to stretch the benevolence dollars of local churches. I'm also on the board of Shelton View Forest Stewardship Association, serving as vice president (special projects), liaison to elected and appointed government officials, and helping with trail maintenance. Shelton View is a 75-acre forest within the city of Bothell. Our purpose is to preserve it as open space — a "wild place” surrounded by the fastest growing area in the state of Washington. This means working with both the city and the Department of Natural Resources. I presently serve as the membership chairman for western Washington's division of the National Model Railroad Association (NMRA). Technically, 700 of us are the 4th division of the Pacific Northwest Region. The hobby encompasses many skill sets, ages, genders, and abilities. Often, we are older mentors to two generations, following the fascinating history, function, and fun of trains. I’m also a blood and platelet donor. Why? Because our Savior was the ultimate "blood donor." His paid the price for my sin.

Jan Rorabaugh ‘69, teacher assistant, library volunteer church volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 486 Hours | SPU Alumna

On Mondays, I assist teachers in a public elementary school, sometimes working with first and fourth graders. On Tuesdays, I volunteer with the Bothell branch of the King County Library System (largest in the U.S.), where I worked for 31 years. I help find requested information for patrons. On Wednesdays, I serve as a data entry helper at the Northshore Community Church where my husband served on staff for 21 years. I help process student applications, health forms, and volunteer sign-up. On Thursdays, I serve at our church, either with childcare for M.O.P.S (Mothers of Preschoolers), or setting up for Women of Wisdom luncheons.

Megan Stariha, youth tutor

September-December 2016 | 30 Hours | SPU Staff Member

Every Monday of the school year, I individually tutor two middle school girls through the High Point Community Center's Youth Tutoring Program. We work on their highest priority school work, and on building foundation skills as time allows.

Martha Picinich ’17, creator of project benefiting homeless women, teacher of mindfulness and meditation, Veterans Day volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 56 Hours | SPU Student

I created a nonprofit project called Purposeful Purses to benefit homeless women in Seattle. I enrolled companies and individual groups to help create purses for local homeless women, and we distributed them in conjunction with the Union Gospel Mission. I also teach mindfulness and meditation to a support group of patients with Parkinson’s disease and senior citizens as a retirement home, along with SPU graduate students. In November 2016, I helped present a 21-flag ceremony to senior citizens on Veterans Day to celebrate three living World War II veterans.

Susan Essary ‘79, church choir member, small group leader, and KidsHopeUSA mentor

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 225 hours | SPU Alumna

I’m a church choir member and leader of a small group. I also mentor a third-grade student with kidshopeusa.

Lori Brown, volleyball team volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 400 hours | SPU Staff Member

I’m a volunteer for Seatown Volleyball Beyond Borders, and for the Franklin high School Volleyball Team.

Kate Kramer ‘17, volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 20 Hours | SPU student

I helped with organization structure assessment and operational process review for ladybug, a nonprofit startup.

Valorie Orton ’75, healthcare clinic founder and coordinator

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 50 Hours | SPU Alumna, Faculty Member

I helped launch a free healthcare clinic in the Snoqualmie Valley area, and I serve as the clinic coordinator. Care Point is part of the Snoqualmie Valley Alliance Church.

Iona Parker ’73, ‘93, Sunday school teacher, church treasurer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 232 Hours | SPU Alumna, Staff Member

I’m a Sunday school teacher and serve as church treasurer and Finance Committee member at Lakewood New Hope Church of the Nazarene.

Niki Amarantides, homelessness advocate

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 60 Hours | SPU Staff Member

I am trying to end homelessness by serving dinner with St. Paul's Episcopal Church every month, serving on the board for the Seattle/King County Coalition on Homelessness with monthly meetings and activities, and serving on the Advisory Board for Tent City 5 (currently located in the Interbay area near campus.)

Steve Gough ’70, Awana Club and Boys Brigade Leader

Academic Year, 2016-17 / 101 Hours / SPU Alumnus, Parent

I currently serve as Chief Ranger of Boys Brigade at Highlands Community Church as well as Commander of an AWANA club. I also co-teach an adult Sunday School class. In previous years, I’ve been a member of SPU’s Alumni Board and served as a volunteer track coach at the high school level.

Richard Sleight, Bible study teacher, photographer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 546 Hours | SPU Staff Member, Parent

I volunteer with three activities annually. I’m lead a weekly Bible study  at Bellevue Presbyterian Church; I’m a summer Bible teacher at Emerald Heights Retirement Community in Redmond, Washington; and I’m a sports photographer for Bellevue Christian School.

Owen Ewald, youth group and small group leader

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 125 Hours | SPU Associate Professor of Classics

I co-lead and convene two groups at Christ Church Seattle. One is a youth group, called EPIC, where topics for discussion include church history, minor prophets, and Christianity’s relationship with other faiths. The other is an adult reading and spiritual growth group called Spiritual Quest II. We read and discuss authors such as Barbara Brown Taylor and Richard Rohr.

Kenda Gatlin ’88, high school volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 20 Hours | SPU Alumna, Staff Member

I recently became involved in two parts of FIRST Robotics. In 2015, King's High School (during my son's senior year) launched Unified Robotics, partnering with special-needs kids from Roosevelt High School and working with them to build elementary-level robots. This year, the program expanded to other high schools and the state championship was held at the Pacific Science Center ꟷ I helped with set up for that day. I also helped as a scorer for division matches this year for FIRST Washington. For one of the matches, we housed participants from the Ugandan Robotics Team, which King High School launched. This was the first robotics match with Special Olympics and the first eastern African team to have a FIRST robotics team. 

Amy Wright ’90, board of trustees 

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 150 Hours | SPU Alumna

I am on the board of trustees for Encompass, an organization that partners with families to build healthy foundations for children through an array of programs in early learning and pediatric therapy services available to all members of the Snoqualmie Valley community.

Lara Patterson Lutz ’09, bookkeeper, treasurer, board of directors

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 300 Hours | SPU Alumna

I’m responsible for strategic planning, advocacy, and fundraising for SAFE, a growing grassroots nonprofit local horse rescue.

Katie Bennett ‘09, group leader, volunteer

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 300 Hours | SPU Alumna, Staff Member

Katie Bennett ’09, graduate program administrative assistant in the School of Health Sciences, volunteers with the high school youth in Lutheran Youth of North Seattle, a cooperative youth group. In addition to regular gatherings she accompanied the youth on their summer trip to Montana in August and helped them to put on an original musical theater production called "Waiting for Luther" earlier in the year.

Warm Beach Camp Board of Directors

Academic Year, 2016-17 | 600 hours | 10 SPU Alumni/Board of Trustees

Three times per year, 10 SPU alumni and a former SPU Trustee volunteer as members of the Warm Beach Camp Board of Directors. Warm Beach Camp, located in Stanwood, Washington, is a Christian camp and conference center that serves thousands of guests per year drawn from churches, non-profit organizations, and government groups. Pictured here (l to r) are Ryan Beagle ’05, Ed McDowell ’85, Daryl Miller ’75, David Goodnight (former SPU Trustee), Molly Holzknecht ’79, Joyce Trepus ’60, Darlene Hartley ’65, John Glancy ’70, Matt Whitehead ’79, and Frank Cranston ’56.

SPRINT Teams Summer 2016

June 14-September 9, 2016 | 19,032 Hours | 29 Students

In all, six SPRINT teams comprised of SPU students ventured throughout the world during Summer 2016, serving in four different countries: Dominican Republic, a country in Southeast Asia, Haiti, and Guatemala. Activities included community outreach, construction, education, children’s programs, and in one country, sustainable community engineering. One Southeast Asian team was able to help local residents with this painting project (photo).

SPRINT Team to Southeast Asia (1)

July 7-August 5, 2016 | 2,160 Hours | 3 Students

SPU students Lauren Nelson, Daniel Kuntz, and Flannery Tirtomihardjo (photo) spent roughly 30 days in Southeast Asia, traveling to three different islands and living with local families. They engaged in painting, construction, cleaning moats, and teaching English. Said one student, “the love and hospitality we received was far, far beyond the worth of service we brought. It was truly a blessing to live, laugh, and eat rice with them.”

CityQuest Teams 2016

September 24, 2016 | 2,400 Hours | 600 Students

Through the John Perkins Center, incoming SPU students spent a day in service to Seattle-area non-profit organizations on September 24 as part of the University’s new student orientation. Some 600 students volunteered in 29 different social and ministry organizations throughout the city such as Ballard Boys and Girls Club, El Centro de la Raza, Food Lifeline, King County Parks, Operation Nightwatch, Redeeming Soles, and World Concern. Photo: Students clean, sort, and prepare shoes for distribution to underprivileged persons of all ages throughout the Pacific Northwest.

Rebecca Vanderpoel ’75, Bible teacher, missionary

Academic year, 2016–17 | 152 hours | 1 year Bible teaching to children/adults

I have volunteered to teach four- and five-year children the Word of God each week on Thursday evenings for two hours for the past eight years. I also teach a Ladies of Faith Sunday School class two times a month. I spent 27 years with my husband as missionaries with Reach Global in Japan. I was also my father’s caregiver for eight years.