Responses collected by Connie Bell, CST, FAST, and Terry Herring, EdS, CSFA, CST, CSPDT, CSIS, COA

As another challenging year comes to an end, being able to shift our focus to those in need in our communities feels more meaningful than ever during this holiday season. Learn how programs across the country — from California, Nevada and North Carolina — are taking part in community service events in their local areas.

Fayetteville Technical Community College

Location: Fayetteville, North Carolina

Fayetteville Technical Community College (FTCC) Surgical Services faculty and students recently participated in the Giving Tree. The tree was decorated with items that are needed by the FTCC Food Pantry, which was started a little over a year ago.

The decorated Fayetteville Technical Community College Surgical Services Giving Tree.

Glendale Career College

Location: Glendale, California

Act of Service: Program Director Matti Maya, CST, CRCST, and her program created Thanksgiving food baskets for selected students in need and collected non-perishable food for St. Joseph The Worker Church, who relies on donations and volunteer workers to feed local homeless and in-need families.

Thanksgiving baskets for Glendale Career College students in need.

Students from Glendale Career College collected non-perishable food for local homeless and in-need families at St. Joseph The Worker Church.

Nevada Career Institute

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

Act of Service: Students, along with program director Silviana Vina, CST, plan to volunteer in the kitchen at a local homeless shelter in Las Vegas, servicing hot meals to residents.

North-West College, Long Beach Campus

Location: Long Beach, California

Act of Service: Jinnie Gardiner, BS, CFA, program director for North-West College’s surgical technology program in Long Beach, California, has organized a cold weather clothing drive for local homeless veterans. She and her students will be delivering the clothing donations to their local Veterans Affairs building.

North-West College, Riverside

Location: Riverside, California

Act of Service: The surgical technology program, led by Jay Barrueta, CST, AOS-ST, assembled Thanksgiving baskets for selected North-West College students and collected food for their local food bank, Feeding America.

The North-West College, Riverside, Surgical Technology Program created Thanksgiving baskets for selected students.

More than 500 pounds of food was collected and donated to at the same campus and donated to the local food bank, Feeding America, in Riverside, California.

North-West College, West Covina

Location: West Covina, California

Act of Service: Program Director Maggie Griffith, BS, CST, has organized a drive for donations of food, clothing, blankets and toiletries. All items will be delivered to Shepherd’s Pantry in Irwindale, California, to assist people in need.

Connie Bell, CST, FAST (left), is the special projects consultant for surgical technology at Success Education Colleges – West Covina, California. She is a member of the ARC/STSA Editorial Advisory Committee. Terry Herring, EdS, CSFA, CST, CSPDT, CSIS, COA (right), is the division chairperson of surgical services and department chairperson of the surgical technology/sterile processing departments at Fayetteville Technical Community College. He is also a member of the ARC/STSA Editorial Advisory Committee.

Is your surgical assisting or surgical technology program participating in a community service project this holiday season? We would love to share your projects and photos with our community on social media, so be sure to tag us on your posts or send them to!