Office of Student Life

Leadership and Community Engagement

Fall Break: Exploring Columbus Through Service

Pay It Forward and Buck-I-SERV are excited to present the inaugural Exploring Columbus Through Service immersive volunteer experience during fall break 2023. This new program will offer three full days of direct, hands-on community service with local agencies and nonprofit organizations as well as three engaging excursions around Central Ohio. Throughout the break, students will have an opportunity to build relationships with one another, participate in service projects focused on community needs and assets, engage in educational and reflection activities and get to know the Columbus community through both service and excursions. Exploring Columbus Through Service is FREE for students.  

Service projects will include (but are not limited to) assisting in a local community garden, organizing a classroom space, serving at a food pantry, visiting and building relationships with high school students and serving alongside adults with disabilities. Students have an opportunity to indicate preferences for areas of interest when registering for Exploring Columbus Through Service. Although we cannot guarantee students will be placed at their top choices, we will make every effort to take preference into consideration during the placement process. 

Evening excursions throughout the program will include a trip to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, movie night at Gateway Film Center and dinner at the North Market! Tickets to the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium and Gateway Film Center, as well as gift cards for the North Market will be provided to each participant. 

Specific schedules with official service site placements will be shared with participants after registration closes, along with additional logistical and programmatic information. 

For a general overview of the program and what to expect, check out the event outline below: 

Exploring Columbus Through Service Program Outline 

Wednesday, October 11 – Exploring Columbus Through Service Kick-Off from 6:30-8p.m. in the Ohio Union Cartoon Room 1 (dinner is provided!)  

Thursday, October 12 – First day of service  

  • Meet at Ohio Union at 8 a.m. to connect with group and pick up lunch 
  • Travel to service site via bus  
  • Volunteer from approximately 9a.m.-5p.m.  
  • Group excursion in Columbus from approximately 5:30-9 p.m.  

Friday, October 13 – Second day of service (same schedule as Day 1 – see above)  

Saturday, October 14 – Third day of service (same schedule as Days 1 and 2 – see above)  

Sunday, October 15 – Exploring Columbus Through Service Closing Ceremony from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. in the Ohio Union Great Hall Meeting Room 1 (brunch is provided!)  

Exploring Columbus Through Service Registration Process 

Participation in Exploring Columbus Through Service is offered through a registration-based process rather than an application. By completing the registration form, you are committing to participate in the program. Registration will be conducted on a first-come, first-served basis with a maximum of 75 registrants. If/when the maximum amount is reached, registration will close. If the maximum is not reached, registration will remain open through October 4. To sign up, please complete the Exploring Columbus Through Service registration form. 


Please contact Lucy Hennon at with any questions about Exploring Columbus Through Service.