During this Christmas holiday students from the Centralia College Speech Club visited senior citizens at Colonial Residence – an assisted living retirement facility within Stillwaters Estates in Centralia. They spent the first hour reading Christmas stories to the seniors, and the second hour making Christmas cards with them.
“Our Speech Club is made up of the most kind-hearted students I’ve ever known, and I’ve taught at five schools,” said Professor Jeff McQuarrie, their advisor. “By the time final exams are over in early December, most students want to get the heck out of dodge, but as soon as these students had some free time the first thing they wanted to do was to visit senior citizens. How cool is that?”
Speech Club Vice President Paul Croft – a business student and aspiring pastor – doesn’t see it the same way as his professor. “I think we got more out of it than the seniors. It was so awesome to see their faces light up when we started reading the Christmas stories. And afterwards, many of the seniors encouraged me to become a pastor.”
Christy Nelson, a nursing student and former prison guard, relished in the stories she heard from the residents. While making Christmas cards, she happened to meet a 90-year-old man who also used to be a prison guard. “He was captivating…he had the kind of prison stories that movies are made of,” said Nelson.
The Speech Club visit was such a big hit that the students have vowed to make this a quarterly thing. “The Colonial Residence is a pretty impressive place and there’s so much we can learn from our elders,” said McQuarrie. “I was surprised how many cool activities they do. They actually had a hard time squeezing us into their busy schedule,” he chuckled.
For more information, contact Jeff McQuarrie at firstname.lastname@example.org or 360-623-8494.