The Clark State Community College Criminal Justice Club has partnered with the Springfield Police Division to help deliver Thanksgiving meals to 11 families in Clark County on Wednesday, November 21.
The newly established Criminal Justice Club of 30 members has been collecting non-perishable food items to accompany the meals for the last month. Meijer will be preparing the meals for Operation Thanksgiving, and they will be delivered by members of the Clark State Criminal Justice Club, the Citizens Academy of Springfield and the Springfield Police Division.
“I’m proud the club members realize they need to have an understanding of all people that they serve,” said Karen Benton, assistant professor of criminal justice for Clark State. “This gives them the chance to actually compare what is discussed in the classrooms to who they will be working with. They will see that community is part of the partnership. This is just the start of developing that relationship.”
Operation Thanksgiving has been serving families in the community for 27 years. This is the first year Clark State has participated. Springfield Police Division Sergeant Thomas Selner who heads up the Community Response Team said he looks forward to partnering with Clark State again on future community projects.
“Clark State wants to get students more involved in the community aspect,” he said.
Additionally, the Criminal Justice Club collected non-perishable food items that will be dispersed to students identified by Clark State’s Office of Student Support Services prior to Thanksgiving.
“This is a completely student-driven club; they have taken the reins and moved forward with the project,” said Benton. “I am really proud that the club has taken off, and that they are taking on projects that help their fellow students and the community at large.”