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Olivet College students are preparing to travel to Port Austin, Mich., for the first service trip of the academic year. Participants will leave Friday, Sept. 5 and return to campus Sunday, Sept. 7.  They will make an additional trip to Port Austin Friday, Sept. 26 to Sunday, Sept. 28. Leading the trips are Mike Fales, director of service learning and campus ministries, and Carrie Jacob, community service coordinator.

During the excursions, students will assist with the renovation of the Port Austin Reef Lighthouse. Participants on last year’s trip were able to go to the lighthouse, which is located two miles off of the lakeshore, and scope out what needed to be done with a few members of the Port Austin community. The group also plans to assist with additional community projects, including Huron County Museum Weekend activities.

Fales has been leading service trips to Port Austin since 2009. The first project students completed there was with the Port Austin History Center. A building was donated to the Port Austin Historical Society and volunteers, including ones from Olivet, completed renovations that have turned it into the beautiful building it is today, which opened its doors to the public in June 2013.

Port Austin is one of three locations that students will travel to this semester for weekend service trips. A trip to Rochester, Pa., a suburb of Pittsburgh, is scheduled for mid-September to work with Hosanna Industries. Fales and Jacob will also be taking students to the Morgan-Scott Project in Deer Lodge, Tenn. later in the semester.

 Learn more about other service learning opportunities at Olivet. For more information about these trips, contact Fales or Jacob.