More than 9,700 service hours to volunteer and service-learning programs provided by 786 students earned Lawrence University inclusion on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the fifth consecutive year.
Lawrence is one of only two Wisconsin institutions named to the Community Service Honor Roll every year since the program was launched in 2006 to recognize commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement.
Announced by the Washington, D.C.-based Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS), a total of 641 colleges and universities were recognized for their impact on issues from literacy and neighborhood revitalization to supporting at-risk youth. A total of 851 institutions applied for the Honor Roll, a nine percent increase over last year.
“The goal of a great university should be to graduate altruistic citizens, young adults with generous hearts to complement their developed minds,” said Lawrence President Jill Beck. “Service is celebrated as a vital part of Lawrence’s culture and it is gratifying to have the dedicated efforts of our students acknowledged nationally.”
Honorees are chosen on the basis of several factors, including the scope and innovation of service projects, the extent to which service-learning is embedded in the curriculum, the school’s commitment to long-term campus-community partnerships and measurable community outcomes as a result of the service.
Among the initiatives for which Lawrence was cited was the Academy of Music’s Young Band Project, a band instruction program that mentored 139 fifth-graders at Appleton’s Lincoln Elementary School; Professor of Biology Bart De Stasio’s research on invasive species in the Fox River involving six student volunteers; and the Lawrence ArtsBridge Program, which creates hands-on experiences in the arts through partnerships between Lawrence student and K-12 supervising host teachers. Last year 192 area students were mentored through Arts Bridge projects.
“With nearly 10,000 service hours, Lawrence student volunteers are clearly sharing their time and talents with a wide variety of organizations around the Fox Cities as well as overseas,” said Monica Rico, Lawrence’s Pieper Family Professor of Servant Leadership and director of the college’s Office for Engaged Learning. “The federal government changed the application significantly for this year’s honor roll, requesting additional data along with evidence of a demonstrated positive impact on the community. I am proud that we met these new standards by providing ample proof of the ways in which Lawrence makes a positive difference.”
According to the CNCS, a federal agency, 3.2 million students performed more than 307 million hours of service across the country last year, service valued at $6.4 billion.
The President’s Community Service Honor Roll is compiled by the CNCS in collaboration with the Department of Education, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact, and the American Council on Education.