Denison Service Orientation
What is Denison Service Orientation (DSO)?
The Denison Service Orientation (DSO) is an intense direct-service experience designed to help incoming students adjust to college, build strong friendships, and realize the possibilities available to them at Denison. Approximately 24 students in the Class of 2017 will travel to Washington D.C. for a service experience related to homelessness, hunger and HIV/AIDS issues. During the program participants will engage in leadership training, group building, issues education and direct service. Three upper-class student leaders and a faculty/staff leader will provide guidance for the group.
Participants will arrive at Denison on August 16th, depart for Washington on August 18th and return to the campus on August 23rd in time to transition to the general August Orientation, beginning August 25th.
Here's what we'll do:
- Explore and reflect upon homelessness, hunger, and HIV/AIDS issues.
- Donate our time in direct service to agencies, shelters and food banks.
- Enjoy group-building activities and participate in daily group and one-on-one conversations.
- Eat, sleep, learn and play together as a cohesive group of service-oriented people experiencing the sights and sounds of our Capitol.
- Make a purposeful transition back to Denison.
Housing, food, and storage for your personal possessions will be provided upon your arrival on campus. Participants will need to pack lightly. Include sandals and sneakers, summer clothing, sweatshirt, umbrella, pillow, light sleeping bag or single sheet and blanket, and a bath towel. Bring a lock to put on a locker if you want to store valuables at the site. We will stay in a church hostel downtown, cook our meals in a church kitchen, use the metro, and walk a lot.
The cost for the program is $250 for each participant which covers all meals, transportation and lodging. Financial aid is available for those who qualify. Apply using the form in the First-Year Notebook or download the PDF below and mail to Denison.
Service-Learning is an important area of emphasis at Denison University. Whether you have had previous service experience or not, the Denison Service Orientation (DSO) is a great way to begin your transition to life at Denison, making new friends within the rewarding context of community service. Participants in DSO must be willing to work cooperatively, join in group discussions and be actively involved in the work we'll be doing.
To help minimize risks and to create a group environment that is fair to everyone, we ask that DSO participants abide by the following policies:
- no non-prescription drugs
- no alcohol
Please feel free to bring CDs, DVDs, iPods, card games, and snacks for the bus trip!