Service Learning

Service Learning Update for Stay at Home Order

During these challenging times, our goal is to maintain the spirit of the Sisters of St. Joseph and continue to encourage OLP students to find ways to look beyond themselves and serve our dear neighbors (local, globally, and virtually!). 

Service Learning Updates:

  • We will be waiving the policy of 20 direct hours and 5 indirect hours. All 25 hours can now be submitted as indirect hours. 
  • We will be allowing parents to verify service hours, rather than the supervisor of a non-profit organization.
  • The current year of service learning began on June 1, 2019 and lasts through August 31, 2020. We will give students an extra month to complete their hours if needed: September 28, 2020 (16 months total).

Christian Service Learning Program

Introduction to Service Learning at OLP

Serving our Dear Neighbor is the heart of the CSJ mission and, therefore, also the heart of OLP's mission. We are called to be loving disciples, serving our neighbor with gentleness, peace and joy. As a member of the OLP community, each student will engage in Christian service, striving to bring about Christ’s kingdom of justice and love.

Service at OLP is grounded in the understanding that every person is created with innate worth and dignity. Through our Christian Service Learning program, students at OLP live the CSJ call to be women of heart, women of faith and women of courage.

General Requirements for Service

It is a graduation requirement for each student to complete 85 hours of volunteer service. This breaks down to 25 hours each for the first three years and 10 hours for senior year. Students are encouraged to go above and beyond these requirements, and we are proud to say that the majority of our students do.

Service hours for each school year can be performed beginning in June of the summer before the school year and up until the beginning of the next school year. Students are encouraged to utilize the summer vacation to participate in meaningful service experiences.

Because serving our Dear Neighbor is the heart of our service learning mission, at least 70 hours of students’ volunteer service must be direct. A maximum of 15 indirect hours will be accepted to fulfill the graduation requirement of 85 hours. All hours may be direct.

Direct and Indirect Service

Direct Service - Hours spent working immediately with those in need or disadvantaged populations. These hours involve face-to-face contact with our Dear Neighbors and focus on building relationships and serving in a personal way.

  • Examples: tutoring children, serving food in a shelter, visiting the elderly, helping patients or their families in a hospital, coaching a team for a person with a disability.

Indirect Service - Hours that do not involve direct interaction with members of a marginalized population. Indirect hours involve the important work that supports non-profit organizations behind-the-scenes. These opportunities are wonderful to be involved in, but service learning at OLP is focused on building relationships with our Dear Neighbors in need.

  • Examples: clerical or custodial work, fundraising events, 5k races, animal care, school/parish/ethnic festivals or meals, beach/neighborhood clean-ups, altar serving.

Examples for Further Clarification

In a school setting....

  • Direct - tutoring students or helping with crafts
  • Indirect - helping a teacher grade assignments or decorate their classroom

With a shelter….

  • Direct - serving food to individuals in need
  • Indirect - sorting or packaging food donations

At a hospital….

  • Direct - guiding patients to their rooms, visiting their families
  • Indirect - assisting in labs, working at gift stores

With your parish….

  • Direct - working with children in Vacation Bible School
  • Indirect - Liturgical Ministry (altar serving, lectoring, etc.)

The goal of community service is not to give free labor. The goal is to provide support to persons and organizations already engaged in Christian Service who would ordinarily be limited in such service without volunteers. Service should be completed with an officially recognized non-profit or service provider. Inappropriate choices for service include babysitting for free, working for free in any place of business, assisting sports teams for other high schools, etc.

Hours completed at OLP events or with OLP students can count towards students’ indirect hour totals. If you have any questions about service opportunities you are considering, please contact the Director of Service Learning and Retreats.

Submitting Service Hours

All service hours should be logged online at All service hour submissions must include a completed verification form, signed by your supervisor, to be approved. This form, as well as instructions for registering on the website and submitting hours, are available online and in the Campus Ministry office. Please contact the Direct of Service Learning and Retreats with any questions or concerns.

Service Hour Due Dates

September 28, 2020 Deadline for grades 9 - 11

Friday, January 24, 2020 Deadline for grade 12

Consequences for Failure to Complete Service Learning Requirements by Deadlines

  1. Late submission of service hours will impact a student’s participation in extracurricular activities, including exclusion from the activity for the 1st quarter. This includes, but is not limited to, athletics, drama, dances, ASB, Link Crew and Carondelet Circle.
  2. Consequences may also include ineligibility to attend end-of-year activities, withholding of yearbooks and graduation tickets, and disciplinary consequences, which may include activity restrictions.

Failure to complete the Service Learning requirement by the posted deadline will be treated as a failure to comply with academic promotion and graduation requirements. The student bears the responsibility of discussing this situation with their Assistant Principal and must complete the necessary hours before her return to school for the next academic year (grades 9-11) or graduation from the Academy (grade 12).

Frosh, Sophomore and Junior Years

Students must complete 25 hours of service with officially recognized non-profits or service organizations. At least 20 of these hours must be direct service, but students may choose to submit 5 hours of indirect service towards their yearly goal. Refer to the ‘Direct and Indirect Service’ section above for clarification.

Please consult the Director of Service Learning and Retreats if you are unsure that your service is appropriate for these requirements.

Senior Year - Intentional Service

Seniors must complete 10 hours of direct service with one officially recognized non-profit or service organization. This service experience must take place between June 1, 2018 and January 25, 2019.

The purpose of establishing a commitment to one organization is to encourage students to deeply understand the mission of the organization and develop meaningful relationships. Students are encouraged to choose an organization that reflects their career interests in some way.

38,314 hours
served in 2018-19

Service Learning Contact:

Katie Wilson
Service Learning & Retreats Director
[email protected]
(On leave Fall 2020)