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500 students volunteer to do public service

Working in teams of 10, about 500 students are devoting four hours apiece tomorrow (Thursday, Aug. 31) to public service volunteer work at non-profit organizations in Cambridge and Boston, as part of the annual CityDays event.

The Franklin Park Zoo, the Cambridge Community Center and the Cambridge YMCA are three of more than 20 service sites to be visited.

CityDays, now in its eighth year, is organized by MIT's Public Service Center (PSC), which coordinates community service activities for students throughout the year.

The teams are made up of freshman and upper-class students from fraternities, sororities and other student groups. Their day will begin at 9am on Kresge Oval, where they'll be greeted by State Representative Jarrett Barrios of Cambridgeport and Paul Parravano, co-director of the MIT Office of Government and Community Relations. Rebecca Onie, founder of Project HEALTH (Helping Empower, Advocate and Lead Through Health), will address the students before sending them out into the community.

CityDays is a part of the PSC's effort to build a sense of community between Cambridge/Boston and MIT. Other PSC programming during the year includes mentoring, science enrichment and fellowship programs for public school students.

Sophomore Patricia McAndrew is the MIT CityDays coordinator. "Our goal is to make sure that both the students and the community benefit from CityDays," said Ms. McAndrew, who worked through the summer with community agencies, MIT staff and students to arrange the event.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on August 30, 2000.

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