St. Thomas students, faculty, staff, alumni, neighbors and friends will answer President Obama’s call to service between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12.

Volunteers from the university and the surrounding community will participate in the first Sept. 11 National Day of Service and Remembrance.

Participants will work on a variety of neighborhood service projects, all within walking distance of campus. Projects include helping Union Park District Council with a food drive, decorating cards and bags for the seniors served by Keystone Community Services’ Meals on Wheels program and for people served by Open Arms of Minnesota; cleaning and organizing work at the Merriam Park Library; and neighborhood street and park cleanup projects.

Meet for a brief welcome and assignments at 10 a.m. on the lower quadrangle of the St. Paul campus (rain site: O’Shaughnessy Educational Center auditorium). The first 50 volunteers will get free T-shirts! Lunch will be provided for all volunteers following their projects. Dress comfortably for walking and weather, and bring your water bottle.

The Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, signed into law last March, established Sept. 11 as an annually recognized National Day of Service and Remembrance. Service projects this weekend also will be the culmination of Obama’s “United We Serve” summer service campaign.

These initiatives were designed to “rekindle the spirit of service, tolerance and compassion that unified America and the world in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 attacks,” said David Paine, president and founder of MyGoodDeed.org, a nonprofit organization established soon after the terrorist attacks. MyGoodDeed.org led the seven-year campaign to secure federal legislation declaring Sept. 11 as a national day of service.

Questions? Contact the UST Center for Intercultural Learning and Community Engagement (CILCE), (651) 962-6800.