Student Life

The Freshman Experience


The Freshman Experience - Fostering a Culture of Encounter

The freshman service experience provides Jesuit students the opportunity to:

  • Develop new relationships and friendships with those experiencing poverty and homelessness, the refugee and stranger among us, the sick and elderly, and children with special needs.
  • Gain knowledge of the six key areas of service and justice that characterize the Jesuit Dallas service experience.
  • Build community with their fellow classmates through serving our neighbors.

All freshmen are required to complete the following in order to fulfill their first year service requirement:

  • Freshman year service orientation (September Guidance)
  • Six workshop seminars introducing the following social justice issues:
    • Poverty & Homelessness (October Guidance)
    • Educational Inequities (November Guidance)
    • Environmental Justice (January Guidance)
    • Elder Care & End of Life Issues (February Guidance)
    • Immigration & Refugees (March Guidance)
    • Caring for those with Special Needs (April Guidance)
  • One weekend or weeknight service project offered by the Office of Service & Justice during the fall semester (sign up in the Ministry and Service Commons). OR the completion of an independent project with an agency from an approved list of Jesuit service partners.
  • One weekend or weeknight service project offered by the Office of Service & Justice during the spring semester (sign up in the Ministry and Service Commons). OR the completion of an independent project with an agency from an approved list of Jesuit service partners.
  • Attendance at one of two Freshman Service Days (Wednesday IDay in the Spring Semester)

Freshmen will not be required to track their service hours. Attendance at all events will be recorded by the Office of Service and Justice and student leaders from the Ignatian Service Corps. Parents will be provided with quarterly email updates detailing which requirements their son has completed.

Jesuit Sponsored Freshman Projects Include:

  • Austin Street Center Game Nights
  • Champions League
  • Saint Joseph's Holiday Activity Days
  • Hillcrest House Dinners
  • Manna for Others Lewisville
Freshman Service Event Sign-ups

Frequently Asked Questions

Does my son need to sign up for more than one time slot for the semester?

No. Each freshman student is only required to sign up for a single time slot in the fall and a single time slot in the spring. (The spring schedule will be released the week after Thanksgiving break). Students do not need to commit to an entire program (example: all four Thursdays at Hillcrest House).

Can my son sign up for more than one time slot?

The number of opportunities are limited and so we ask that each freshman student only register for one time slot using the online registration system above. Three days prior to an event the online registration will close automatically and any remaining vacancies will be available for the general student population. Students (including freshmen) may come by the Ministry and Service Commons (across from the cafeteria) to sign up for any openings/vacancies.

What if none of the published dates work for my son’s schedule?

Students can plan and schedule their own service project working with one of the approved Freshman service agencies, published above. Upon completion of the project the student must submit documentation signed by a representative of the agency verifying they completed the project.

Does my son need to create an account with X2Vol?

No. We are in the process of migrating away from the X2Vol system. The class of 2022 will be the first class who will no longer be required to document their service efforts in X2Vol. A team of senior student leaders and faculty assigned to the freshman service projects will document and report attendance to the Office of Service & Justice. You will receive periodic emails throughout the semester reporting on your son’s progress and any requirements he still needs to complete.

How many hours of service does my son need his Freshman Year/during his time at Jesuit?

One of the changes we are making is to move away from quantifying service by hours. It has been our observation that this tends to distract students from the larger purpose, value, and personal transformation that happens by spending time in community with individuals who are living under considerable hardship and injustice. Beginning this year we are moving to a project based approach as well as integrating the service experience into the regular school day/calendar. It will be the responsibility of the Service & Justice office to administer a program which provides each student with the number and depth of opportunities that meet the school’s expectations.