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Community Service

Hallmark ensures that its students don't leave with just photographic skills and a solid business plan but also with a budding social conscience. Hallmark has a history of being active in the community; now it's part of the curriculum. Students volunteer to be part of projects that range in duration and style of photography. In addition to gaining invaluable real-life experience, they are giving back to the community.

Students volunteer to be part of projects that range in duration and style of photography. In addition to gaining invaluable real-life experience, they are giving back to the community.

Relay For Life

(32 student volunteers)

32 Hallmark students and one alumnus volunteered for the Franklin County Relay For Life event June 10-11, 2010. Photographers took free team portraits and each member of the team received a free color 5x7. A moving group survivor portrait was also created and each survivor received a free color 8x10. Students covered all aspects of this emotional 24-hour event, photographing around the clock, totaling 768 hours of volunteer time. This is the third year Hallmark students have provided event and portrait photography for Relay For Life.

United Way Portrait Weekend

(More than 35 student volunteers)

More than 35 Hallmark students volunteered their weekend to create family portraits to raise money for Baystate Franklin Medical Center's Employee United Way campaign.

With only 9 weeks of experience the students took on the challenge and photographed over 85 families (including 18 dogs and one cat) in the state-of-the-art facilities at Hallmark. Students handled every aspect of the event — greeting families, photographing, posing, assisting, editing images, and soothing crying babies.

"We are very excited that Hallmark Institute and its student photographers agreed to collaborate with us on this special fundraiser again this year," said Lisa Hudson, employee campaign chairwoman.

Heart Gallery

(Student volunteers: Ashley, Eric, Collette, Noble, Teri)

A student volunteer and his subject walk to the playing field to setup their shoot.The mission of Heart Gallery of America Inc. is to facilitate and utilize the power of photography to capture the individuality and dignity of children living in foster care, in order to advocate for their permanency, raise public awareness about their needs, and obtain support to help meet those needs. Four Hallmark students photographed children in Western Massachusetts for the state Heart Gallery.


There's a set of recent Heart Gallery portraits on Flickr that includes work from our students.

Dakin Humane Society

(Student volunteers: Kristyn, Eric, LeeAnn, Travis)

Student volunteers, Eric and LeeAnn work to capture the spirit of just one of Dakin's rescued animals.

Students will be volunteering as pet photographers for the Dakin Animal Shelter providing professional images to help get animals adopted more quickly.

Big Brothers Big Sisters

(Student volunteers: Melissa, Hilary, Kevin)

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County is dedicated to helping children reach their highest potential through professionally supported one-to-one mentoring relationships with volunteers. Hallmark Photography students will be covering various events over the next 6 months.

"We at Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County have been so lucky to have had the help of Hallmark Students. Being a non-profit organization, we have limited funds, but a big need to reach out to the community and encourage folks to volunteer with our program. By using the pictures that the Hallmark Students took, we are able to create high-quality marketing materials; offer professional portrait prints to our current Bigs and Littles; and plan to create a powerful slideshow showing the benefits of mentoring. To an outsider, it might appear that we were paying big money for our photographers; however, the students generously volunteered their time to help our program. They handled every task professionally; we were able to contact them easily; they were always on time; and their photos are truly worth a thousand words! If they continue to offer their services to our program, we will definitely use them again and again!" -- Brooke Canada Highland Street Corp/Americorp Ambassador of Mentoring Big Brothers Big Sisters of Franklin County


(More than 20 student volunteers)

A view of the Avenue A Bridge from upstream shows the beauty of the Turners Falls area.

Riverculture is a dynamic non-profit partnership of leaders from the Turners Falls arts, cultural and business communities. These entities joined together to promote and enhance the wide variety of cultural activities that Turners Falls has to offer residents and visitors.

Students set out with a wide variety of assignment to help provide visual imagery for the Riverculture website. This project started in the fall and students will continue to submit work for the cultural organization untill they graduate in June. So far more than 20 students have submitted work for consideration. Images appear on the website and are used in the weekly email newsletter.

The Hole In the Wall Gang Camp

(Student and Faculty volunteers, corporate donations)

The Hole In the Wall Gang Camp logoHallmark instructors travel to Ashford, CT to produce a photo session to brighten the day of some of the young campers and their families at The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp. Founded in 1988 by Paul Newman, the Camp is a nonprofit, year-round center serving children and their families coping with cancer, sickle cell anemia, and other serious illnesses.

For the photo weekend faculty will set up portrait studios in the dressing rooms of the Camp’s gorgeous on-site theater and photograph campers hamming it up—with costumes or without.

Hallmark has become involved with this organization by outfitting the Camp with new and donated camera equipment, computers and printers for the campers and staff to use. Hallmark alumna Judy Barrette volunteered to photograph the Camp’s annual fundraising gala.


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