Student from Ipswich named to Civic Engagement Hall of Fame

Thomas Durfee, of Ipswich, a senior sport and movement science major at Salem State, was recently inducted into the university’s Civic Engagement Hall of Fame for his work with community partner, Lifebridge. Lifebridge is an organization that provides housing to homeless men and women, and offers supportive services to help encourage personal growth and stability.

During his time at Salem State, Durfee has organized events focused on homelessness and awareness for hunger while being actively involved with student government and volunteering at a local retirement community, among many other projects.

Most notably, according to an administrator, Durfee shared his personal experience of homelessness during Community Service Week at Salem State. To dramatize the situation faced by homeless people, he organized a group of students to sleep outside in November to show that homelessness is everywhere and can impact anyone. The event provided facts and information about homelessness in America.

Durfee, himself, is a direct product of volunteer efforts. Homeless at age nine, he attributes the help of the Bread of Life to help him get to where he is today. Durfee believes the true test of humanity is in our willingness to help those less fortunate than ourselves. In that spirit, Salem State has made a $500 donation to Lifebridge.

Durfee hopes to teach elementary or secondary school after graduation later this month.