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Mulch and musty closets don’t make for a glamorous spring break, but students from the University of Northern Iowa still had smiles on their faces Tuesday.

About 40 students made an overnight stop in Shreveport as part of the Students Today Leaders Forever tour. They will make five stops for volunteer service projects before ending their week with other touring groups in Dallas.

“Not everything is like small town Iowa,” senior Madeline Stenersen said. “I never realized how many organizations are out there to help people.”

At Volunteers of America, the 40 students split into two groups. One worked on some landscaping at the Veterans Transitional Living Program, and the other cleaned out offices of a program that closed last year.

SONY DSCBoth projects would have taken staff or other volunteers hours if not days. The students were nearly done by mid-morning.

“I liked doing it and it definitely needed work,” sophomore Molly Davison said.
The group also had dinner with the LightHouse Teen Club members, which was a highlight for everyone.

Davison said the trip has far exceeded her expectations.

“I wanted to do something to help people and travel,” she said. “I’ve loved everything we’ve done.”

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