Sabine Auguste has consistently contributed to the Sacred Heart University community and the local Bridgeport, Connecticut area through her dedicated community service involvement, since she was a freshman in 2000. A resident of Stamford, Connecticut, Sabine entered her sophomore year at Sacred Heart University as the president of Habitat for Humanity Campus Chapter. Under her leadership, the Campus Chapter started the year with an annual “sleep-out” dramatizing the affordable housing crisis. The event raised $1,100 dollars.
Sabine worked in partnership with fellow Habitat board members in planning a four-day Habitat Weekend Challenge in South Philadelphia. Fourteen students, under the leadership of Auguste, worked with South and West Philadelphia Habitat for Humanity Affiliates. Working on brick row houses, the participants successfully placed siding on a home and did masonry work. Most importantly, the students learned about the redlining practices that destroyed the Stiles Streets neighborhood.
Sabine also led the Campus Chapter into their alternative spring break trips. In the spring of 2002, the Chapter sponsored two trips: Boston, Massachusetts, and Wilmington, Delaware. Sabine organized the trip to Boston, made all the arrangements and led the five university students and one faculty. She encouraged the group to work in the Habitat neighborhood and planned a Read Aloud visit to a Boston school. They also worked at an after school program. During the week, the students lived in a hostel, worked with Boston Habitat, and experienced the culture of the city.
In April 2002, Sabine initiated Habifest at Sacred Heart University. It was the organization’s first year participating in Habifest – a Habitat for Humanity national effort to dramatize the issue of poverty housing on the university campus. With the assistance of her board members, she was able to organize a shed-building event on campus property. Three sheds were built on the main patio of the university where 55 people participated. Flyers were also given out to educate students about the issue. The sheds were donated to Habitat homeowners in Bridgeport because many of the Habitat homes lacked a place for families to store lawn mowers and lawn equipment. The Campus Chapter also sold t-shirts and pins to raise $780 dollars to pay for the material for the sheds.
Sabine Auguste’s commitment extends beyond her presidency role in Habitat. In the past three semesters, she was one of several student leaders in two annual urban immersion programs at the university. In January 2002, she was a student leader for CURTIS Week, a program that explores the theme of diversity in celebration of the memory and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and other social activists. It attempts to confront social issues by exposing the Sacred Heart student participants to the social injustices in society. She led students in their hands-on service experiences. She also facilitated discussion on issues such as urban poverty, prejudice, racism, immigration, and community violence.
In August 2002, she again served as a student leader during Community Connections. Similar to CURTIS Week, Community Connections is an urban immersion week for incoming freshmen. The students lived in Bridgeport and did service work in partnership with the community. She helped in planning the week, transporting and overseeing students at designated worksites and facilitated discussions.