April 14, 2017 |

Student Experience: Spring Cleanup in Vernon Park


Written by: 
Demetrius Coachman, student leader volunteer
Political Science, Temple University ’19

Philly decided that this Saturday, April 8, was going to be a good day and student leader volunteers came through on Philly Spring Cleanup Day in Vernon Park. If you asked me where Vernon Park was before I volunteered, I would probably ask if it was close to the Verno Mountains in Greece. However, after distributing and placing mulch and fighting against a stubborn tree stump alongside students from other nearby higher-level institutions for two hours, I learned that the 23 Bus heading North on 11th Street is the best mode of public transportation to reach Vernon Park. I also learned that twisting the tree stump during its final moments is a good strategy.

As a college student in their final months of the spring semester, I truly didn’t think or have faith that many students would wake up early on a Saturday to give back to the community, I’m sorry but it’s the truth. But I was proven wrong! There was a healthy mix of students from all the colleges that I’ve heard of and even some I haven’t. I am not shy to talk to people but I could see that some were apprehensive of the idea so I started talking and made a few new friends, and I am all about making new friends. Together we did a lot, we moved truckloads of mulch to numerous trees, dug up two tree stumps that were more stubborn than a little sibling and learned about an awesome outdoor venue for a plethora of activities.

I absolutely love community service and I had definitely had my workout for the day through the medium of helping others. These are the moments when my dad would say, “Builds character”, for when I would ask him, ‘Why are we doing this?’, back when I was knee-high. Now I get excited just at the thought of participating. Shout-out to those who helped put this whole event together, Friends of Vernon Park, Vernon Park crew and staff, and Campus Philly for the successful collaborative efforts.

If you’re interested in jumping in on opportunities like this, I would highly recommend reaching out to Campus Philly’s Cory Dulaney to talk about joining the Student Leader Network!

See you at the next meet-up,



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