UT Martin recognized for students' community service
Posted: Tuesday, March 9, 2010 9:03 pm
Community service projects carried out by University of Tennessee at Martin students have been as varied as the individuals involved. A community garden, an anthology of local legends, trash collection and recycling efforts, a concert for clients of an abuse-prevention center and sports-related events to benefit several agencies were among the projects that engaged students.
The time spent volunteering added up, with 9,841 hours of service logged during FY2008-09. A total of 378 UT Martin students were engaged in academic service-learning and 3,362 students involved in other community service.
As a result of the collective “good works,” the university recently was named to 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.
“We are honored to be among a number of excellent universities that have been honored for their involvement in community service and civic engagement,” said UT Martin Chancellor Tom Rakes. “Our role is to assist students in developing as balanced individuals, including maximum engagement in academic, emotional and community-focused activities and experiences.”
The Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers the annual Honor Roll award, recognized more than 700 colleges and universities for their impact on issues from poverty and homelessness to environmental justice. On campuses across the country, thousands of students joined their faculty to develop innovative programs and projects to meet local needs using the skills gained in their classrooms.
“Congratulations to UT Martin and its students for their dedication to service and commitment to improving their local communities,” said Patrick Corvington, Corporation for National and Community Service CEO.
“Our nation’s students are a critical part of the equation and vital to our efforts to tackle the most persistent challenges we face. They have achieved impactful results and demonstrated the value of putting knowledge into practice to help renew America through service.”
Honorees are chosen based on a series of selection factors including the scope and innovation of service projects, percentage of student participation in service activities, incentives for service and the extent to which the school offers academic service-learning courses.
“I am excited to see our campus recognized for its many contributions to the region we serve,” said Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Jerald Ogg.
“UT Martin has a rich tradition of finding creative ways to link the learning and service components within its classrooms, and that is one reason our graduates are prepared to assume leadership roles in the communities they join.”
College students make a significant contribution to the volunteer sector; 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.
Each year, the corporation invests more than $150 million in fostering a culture of service on college campuses through grants awarded by its programs; the education awards that AmeriCorps members receive at the conclusion of their term of service to pay for college and through support of training, research, recognition and other initiatives to spur college service.
The corporation oversees the Honor Roll in collaboration with the Department of Education, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact and the American Council on Education.