Crispinellis and Gianacacis donate funds for 2011 service and study opportunities

Bali Service Project is one of 10 international and domestic proposed J-Term 2011 courses

Published Oct. 04, 2010

Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti that took the lives of two Lynn University professors and four students, the parents and families of those lost wanted to help other students who shared their loved ones' passion for helping others. All the families have established ways to honor their daughters, and the Crispinellis and Gianacacis created funds that will begin to help Lynn students this year.

In March 2010, Stephanie Crispinelli’s family created the Stephanie Crispinelli Endowed Memorial Scholarship to honor Steph's life and love of education and service. The scholarship will be awarded to students who emulate Steph’s enthusiasm for reaching out to help others and commit themselves to responsible citizenship in our global society. The funds will provide tuition and travel assistance for selected students who wish to participate in humanitarian courses approved and sponsored by Lynn. As an endowed fund, this scholarship will live on in perpetuity. The first scholarship will be awarded in the 2010-2011 academic year.

Christine Gianacaci's parents, in honor of Christine’s life and love to help others, especially children, created the Christine Gianacaci Journey of Hope Award. This award will fund two students' travel costs for the J-Term humanitarian mission trip.

“Each year, we meet with students who want to take part in experiential learning opportunities off campus but are unable to do so due to lack of funding,” said Anna Krift, director for the Center of Global Education and Citizenship at Lynn. “These initiatives provide Lynn students with the resources to participate in experiential learning and service at the local, national and global level, further mutual understanding and memorialize the Journey of Hope members service abroad.”

President Kevin Ross also affirmed Lynn’s dedication to international travel and service. “I have been asked many times if we plan to carry on with our commitment to international education and send our students on service trips to other countries,” said Ross, “and my answer is a resounding yes.”

Also in March 2010, the university established the Lynn University Global Citizenship Memorial Fund in memory of the dedicated faculty members and students who lost their lives in the earthquake while providing service and care to the people of Haiti. This fund will provide monies for students to experience university-designed and -approved educational and service opportunities which focus on communities in need at the international, national and local levels.

Proposed 2011 domestic and international J-Term courses

Lynn’s Office of Academic Affairs recently announced 12 proposed domestic and international Dialogues of Innovation January mini-term (J-Term) courses for 2011. The two-and-a-half week J-Term, part of the Dialogues of Learning, will begin on Jan. 5, 2011, and end on Jan. 21, 2011. For the third consecutive year, Lynn students will be learning in some unconventional, exciting and often experiential ways while traveling around the world.

Highlights from the 2011 roster include:
  • A volunteer service trip, “Bali Service Project,” where students will engage in service projects with local elementary schools in Bali, Indonesia and learn about Balinese culture, geography and history.
  • A communication course, “Travel Channel You,” where students will have the opportunity to be on camera, write scripts, shoot video, audio and edit as they work in teams to conceptualize their own travel videos on a cruise through Spain, Portugal, Morocco and Italy.

The J-Term provides students with educational experiences focusing on original ideas, topics, pedagogies and/or experiential learning. All undergraduate students are required to participate in J-Term. Academic Domestic Programs (ADPs) and Academic Programs Abroad (APAs) provide three academic credits and on-campus courses offer 2 academic credits. All courses are heavy on hands-on learning opportunities. The 2011 on-campus courses will be announced in the coming weeks.

More on the Crispinelli and Gianacaci funds

Stephanie Crispinelli Humanitarian Fund

The Crispinelli family has also established the Stephanie Crispinelli Humanitarian Fund to continue Steph’s dream of helping the poor and underprivileged. Their goal is to combat poverty by providing education to children in need. Early this summer, in partnership with Food For The Poor, they constructed an elementary school in Jamaica called “Steph’s Place,” which is currently providing an education for 87 students. Stephanie’s family hopes to have continued support so they are able to build a “Steph’s Place” annually. For more information visit StephaniesMission.org.

Christine’s Hope for Kids Foundation

Christine Gianacaci’s parents, John and Jean, founded the Christine’s Hope for Kids Foundation, whose mission is to continue Christine’s spirit and loving qualities, to help less fortunate children and to support local community agencies in the U.S.A. that work with and benefit children. The foundation not only wants to raise money to support their mission, but it also wants to teach and communicate the idea that every person can make a difference each day by helping others and being kinder.

Christine’s passion for helping children led her to participate in the Journey of Hope trips to Jamaica and Haiti. Christine’s Hope for Kids Foundation will provide the necessary funds to allow other Lynn students participating in service organizations and humanitarian classes who want to participate in these trips and have life-altering experiences while servicing others. The foundation has already helped over 700 children and has donated over $50,000 that has allowed kids to go to summer camp, learn to swim, have a new pair of baseball shoes, filled backpacks with new school supplies or helped teens attend leadership conferences.

“If we can donate this kind of money and help this many children in six months,” said John and Jean Gianacaci, “just imagine the impact this foundation will have in all the years to come.” For more information on Christine’s Hope for Kids Foundation please visits their website at Christineshope.org.