Saint Joseph's University

Philadelphia Service Immersion Program

Welcome Class of 2023! We can’t wait for you to begin your journey on Hawk Hill!

There is so much on the mind coming into your first year at SJU, but one of the best ways to meet other incoming students, explore Philadelphia, and learn about all the service opportunities on campus is through the Philadelphia Service Immersion Program.

PSIP, Philadelphia Service Immersion Program, is a four day optional early move-in experience of community service, urban exploration, reflection, and intellectual discovery. PSIP introduces you to the community of SJU and the opportunities throughout Philadelphia with lots of fun and adventure! Students serve during the day at a community site in Philadelphia and explore sites of Philadelphia in the afternoon! Our program also includes reflection components to engage students in discussing the Jesuit values of social justice, service to those on the margin, moral discernment, and intellectual inquiry.

Service. Students are placed in a small group with an upperclassman leader to guide and explore Philadelphia together. Our program also includes many large group activities and fun field games for students to get involved in and meet new students too. PSIP is structured with lots of city exploration and Philadelphia immersion. Some of the service sites student groups have attended during the day include, Urban Tree Connection, Inglis House, Saint John’s Hospice, Habitat for Humanity, Northern Children’s Services, and many more! These service sites introduce students to the value of solidarity and social justice advocacy. Students are immersed in the realities of Philadelphia and are given structured opportunities to discover and self-reflect, as they transition into college. Serving with community partners can open up many opportunities for students to get involved during the school year with service and social justice advocacy too.

City Exploration. In addition to service, PSIP includes exploration of the city of Philadelphia each day with trips to locations that have included Chinatown, Philadelphia Zoo, Eastern State Penitentiary, Spruce Street Harbour Park, the Franklin Institute, African American Museum, and many more! Students will attend a Philly Destination and dinner with their small group and a Professor to meet a faculty member and ask questions about college transitioning, networking, and class advice. Students will also go to Chinatown for dinner one night and explore the character and culture of the buzzing town! PSIP offers many opportunities for students to learn how to use public transportation and navigate Philadelphia. Students also get opportunities to explore SJU campus and acclimate to life on Hawk Hill.

Community. There are 28 incredible student leaders who are enthusiastic to welcome you to Hawk Hill and transition to life at SJU. When you take part in PSIP, you gain an incredible community of authentic, genuine friends and mentors. If you ask someone what PSIP has given them since coming to SJU, an overwhelming response of people say “a community”. It is amazing to see the connection small groups make within a short 4 days and the continuation of the friendships throughout time at SJU. PSIP introduces you to a support group that will carry memories and friendships throughout your time at SJU. As a participant of PSIP myself, I can say that PSIP was the best decision I made coming to SJU as it opened me to new friends, a community, exploration of Philadelphia, and a passion for service and social justice. I encourage you to take the leap to meet new friends, serve in Philadelphia, and be part of an incredible community.

PSIP has an incredible ability to foster love, community, friendship, self-discovery, and urban exploration. Whether you are ecstatic to come to college or hesitant and a bit nervous, PSIP will give you an authentic community for you to be yourself. I encourage you to take part in this early move-in program that offers a way to immerse yourself in the community of SJU and Philadelphia.

Applications for PSIP are opened and close July 5th. The application can be found here: sju.edu/earlyarrival. In addition, check out our website sites.sju.edu/psip/ for more information. You can also see our fun adventures on Instagram @sjupsip. We hope to see you on campus for PSIP in August!

– Stephanie Crispell, Class of ’20