Emory & Henry College, located in southwest Virginia, is among six colleges in the country named “Presidential Awardees” on the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll—the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.
The Corporation for National and Community Service oversees the Honor Roll in collaboration with the Department of Education, Department of Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact, and the American Council on Education. This year, more than 700 colleges and universities were recognized for their “impact on issues from poverty and homelessness to environmental justice.”
Emory and Henry earned honors in the “Service to Youth from Disadvantaged Circumstances” category for having more than 80 percent of its students participate in service projects with a focus on sustainable development “to improve living standards” in neighboring communities. Students also provided a tutoring and mentoring program as well as afterschool enrichment activities in local schools.
Towson University and the College of William and Mary earned places on the “Honor Roll with Distinction” for the scope and innovation of their service projects. Other local colleges and universities recognized with “Honor Roll” awards include American University, Georgetown, George Washington, Loyola University of Maryland, UMBC, St. Mary’s College of Maryland, the University of Maryland, JMU, Marymount University, the University of Mary Washington, the University of Richmond, UVA, Virginia Tech, and Virginia Commonwealth University.
College students make significant contributions to the volunteer sector, and the availability of service learning opportunities is becoming increasingly important to high school students seeking civic engagement. In 2009, 3.16 million students performed more than 300 million hours of service, according to the Volunteering in America study released by the Corporation for National and Community Service. Each year, the Corporation invests more than $150 million toward fostering a culture of service on college campuses.
A federal agency, the Corporation oversees the Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America Programs. For more information or to learn how colleges are integrating volunteerism and service learning into their educational programs, visit http://www.nationalservice.gov/.