200 Days in the Life of the College

Wednesday, November 17

Making a little time matter a lot

By Ryan Park ’12

A lot can be done with 30 minutes at Hamilton. You can share a meal with friends, have a thought-provoking discussion, perhaps enjoy a campus stroll. A 30-minute break can help maximize the Hamilton experience — and Hamilton experiences often include helping the world around us.

During my first year, before a busy schedule taught me the value of 30 minutes, I checked out the fair for HAVOC (Hamilton Association for Volunteering, Outreach and Charity). Lured by the smell of donuts and cider and the encouragement of a friend, I put my name down for Food Salvage. Two weeks and an information session later, I was behind the hot food counter at Commons, dishing leftovers into aluminum containers. When I learned from the Food Salvage site coordinator later that year that we had already delivered more than 100 meals to the Your Neighbors Program in Utica, I couldn’t help but feel rewarded. To think that people who would not otherwise have had access to a decent meal had been properly fed was something to smile about.

This semester I serve as a site coordinator. My 30 minutes a week are spent making deliveries and overseeing the supplies. And even though there are nights after dinner in Commons when my only company is the Bon Appétit staff, there is something very peaceful about stepping away from the hectic Hamilton routine and finding a little quiet time to salvage food for others.