SPRINGFIELD, Ohio — In keeping with Wittenberg’s commitment to global service and education, Scott Rosenberg, associate professor of history, led a group of 29 students on a service trip to the South African Kingdom of Lesotho from May 17-June 15.
Wittenberg students enrolled in classes at the National University of Lesotho, and they also spent several days volunteering for Habitat for Humanity (HFH) in Maseru, the capital of Lesotho. The group spackled houses and dug pit latrines among various service projects. They also volunteered at the Maseru Children’s Village, an orphanage of 35 children, some of whom have AIDS.
The trip was Rosenberg’s second. In 2003, he traveled to Lesotho for 30 days with a group of 22 students that helped with a similar project.
“The experience was so powerful the last time that I wanted to do it again,” he said, noting that many students also requested that he lead another trip.
Students built playground equipment for the children’s village and planted 32 fruit trees, which Rosenberg hopes will help provide some nourishment for the community in the future. Thanks to state, regional and national grants and numerous fundraisers, students were able to raise $12,000 to help subsidize the cost of the materials.
Rosenberg, once a Peace Corps volunteer in Africa, has been volunteering for nearly 20 years. In addition to serving as Wittenberg’s adviser for HFH, he also established WittBuild, a three-and-a-half year campaign that raised money to fund a house built by Wittenberg students for the Springfield community.
Rosenberg said the student volunteers’ generosity and compassion in Lesotho especially impressed him, and he described the experience as moving.
“The students opened their hearts and minds, they cared and they helped. It was amazing to see and made me respect them so much,” he said.
Pam Evans of Lindsey, Ohio, class of 2006, said she enjoyed spending time with the children in the village and noted that the trip was surreal in terms of exposing her to how other people around the world live. Evans, a religion major, is interested in doing international nonprofit work.
“There are only so many things you can learn from reading a book or talking with others who have a similar background as yourself,” Evans said.
“But there is no limit to what you can learn from walking with a person from another country, working side by side with someone who speaks little or no English, hugging someone who can only offer a hug in gratitude, or watching a small child when they recognize your face.”
— Sarah Gearhart '06
Send a Message
• Book-Delivering Prof Named Ohio Professor of the Year
• Senior Class Selects Livestrong President & CEO Doug Ulman As 2011 Commencement Speaker
•Communication Program Honored Nationally With Top Award
• Wittenberg University Art Students Finalists For Scholarship Award