April 4, 2013
FairPoint Communications has given a $10,000 sponsorship gift to Franklin Pierce University’s “Pierce on the Camino” program, a unique study abroad opportunity. Every other fall semester, approximately 15 students accompanied by one faculty member embark on a semester-long walk on the Camino de Santiago – one of the oldest pilgrimage routes in the world.
Dr. James F. Birge, president of Franklin Pierce University says, “The Pierce on the Camino program is a very special study abroad opportunity which recognizes the value of different types of knowledge and experiential learning. I am delighted that FairPoint Communications acknowledges that value and is helping to sustain it and make it available to students who have financial need.”
The walk through southern France and across northern Spain along the well-trod pilgrimage route to Santiago de Compostela allows students to immerse themselves in active learning, challenging them to grow intellectually, physically, and spiritually. Students travel between 10-15 miles each day, carrying a backpack and staying in pilgrim hostels, country inns, and monasteries. They experience times of prolonged solitude and self-reflection, the beauty of the natural world, and sustained conversations with others in the group and with fellow pilgrims from all over the world, which become fodder for each student’s own self-creating experience. After their semester-long walk, students commonly speak of gaining a broader perspective of the world and a deeper love of humanity.
“This is truly a unique program and we are pleased to contribute the scholarship gift,” said Pat McHugh, FairPoint’s New Hampshire state president. “The University’s program is a great educational opportunity that gives students the chance to learn and challenge themselves over the course of their pilgrimage.”
FairPoint is a leading communications provider of high-speed Internet access, local and long-distance phone, television, and other broadband services to customers in communities across 17 states. The company frequently makes investments in the communities where they do business by contributing to events, sponsoring local programs, and supporting organizations and educational institutions that enrich the lives of New Hampshire citizens. To that end, FairPoint made more than $480,000 in civic and community contributions in New Hampshire in 2012.
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