LINDSBORG – A Servant Leadership minor at Bethany College merges the knowledge and skills of service to others with leading others. Linzi Garcia, a Bethany College Servant Leadership minor in her senior year and Circles of McPherson County leader, is seeking to counter the divisiveness and negativity of our country’s national sociopolitical conversation. In doing so, she is hosting an innovative public interactive art project Oct. 9–16, titled UNITY.

UNITY is circular arrangement of 32 poles in a large field. Each pole is labeled with an identifier. For example, “I’m a parent,” “I speak English as a second language,” “My family’s continent of origin is South or Central America.” With yarn, participants tie to each pole with which they identify. A canopy of interconnectedness forms as more people participate. In the end, we see that we are all connected by something. This project celebrates the uniqueness of individuals and raises awareness of how labels impact our perception of and interactions with the world. The poles will be located on the north side of the Welcome Center/Chapel on Bethany College campus.

“I believe that unifying the people of our local community is the first step to changing the tone of the national sociopolitical conversation,” says Linzi. “Optimism, camaraderie, and respectfulness encourages leadership as we progress as individuals, as well as communally. This worldwide project prompts us to consider the power of unity around the globe. We have the power to make a positive change.”

Bethany servant leaders advance the development of a caring, cooperative community that emphasizes service and involvement, a balanced approach to life and work, and the sharing of responsibility and recognition. They apply their skills as college students, as civic and community organizers, and as business managers and professionals after they graduate.

Discover more at unityproject.net and at #WeLiveBig

Bethany College, established by Swedish Lutheran immigrants in 1881, is a college of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The mission of Bethany College is to educate, develop and challenge individuals to reach for truth and excellence as they lead lives of faith, learning, and service. Bethany College is on the Web at www.bethanylb.edu.