Theresa Malafronte is currently serving as the Community Partnerships VISTA at the Office of Community Service at Salve Regina University. In this role, Theresa works to build and strengthen campus-community partnerships in order to effectively meet needs of low-income communities by leveraging Salve’s assets and mobilizing its student volunteer base to respond to ongoing local community challenges.
Host Site: Office of Community Service at Salve Regina University
Where did you go to school? Edinboro University
What are your personal and professional interests? Personal: Ultimate Frisbee, Craft Beer, Fitness, Volunteering, Game of Thrones; Professional: Youth Development, Civic Engagement, Event Planning, Promotions
If you could have any super power, what would it be? To be Professor X or Jean Grey
Story of Service: I choose to serve because it gave my life meaning and worth. I believe in helping others. I still had a lot of interests in many jobs and wanted a temporary position that would build my skills. When I learned about VISTA from an alumna from my university and the program at Salve, it just seemed like a perfect fit.
This year, I have motivated students to volunteer countless hours in the community. Many of them did great work to help the community, especially through the Service Advocate Program where the students completed a total of 1,430 hours at community partners that needed a lot of help to work with individuals that live in poverty. I hope I instilled a desire in students to serve in Newport, which is their community, at least for the four years before graduation. Through many of the service retreats, I had the opportunity to educate students on local poverty issues and support students who were volunteering.
I had a lot of professional successes this year. I created a Community Partner Handbook for better communications between the Office of Community Service and our community partners. I fed 63 service plungers on a small budget and developed some catering skills in the process. I helped support and did some media coverage of Salve’s Exploratory Day of Service. I oversaw the Hunger and Homelessness Student Committee which carried out the Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week at Salve. I organized and planned Service Plunge 2.0, where 26 students came out for two days to be part of the Watershed Weekend, cleaning Bailey’s Brook that runs through Aquidneck Island. I planned and facilitated a few Student Development Meetings for the Service Advocate Program. Lastly, in my VAD I planned and executed the End of the Year Drive and Yard Sale where we raised $886.47 for student scholarships!