VCU is Named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll

Virginia Commonwealth University has been named to the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll by the Corporation for National and Community Service.

The honor roll was launched in 2006 and is the highest federal recognition colleges and universities can achieve for service learning and civic engagement. It is sponsored by the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation and the U.S. Departments of Education and Housing and Urban Development.

The selection recognizes VCU’s commitment to service and civic engagement. This is the fourth consecutive year that VCU has been listed on the Honor Roll.

“It’s gratifying to be recognized at the national level for being a model of community service among the nation’s colleges and universities,” said Lynn Pelco, service learning program director, Division of Community Engagement

Pelco included detailed information about the following community service projects in VCU’s Honor Roll application:

  • CreateAthon: an effort by students in the School of Mass Communication to provide advertising services to local nonprofit agencies that have little or no marketing budget.
  • VCU Pharmacy Community Outreach: an ongoing effort by students and faculty in the VCU School of Pharmacy to provide volunteer health services in not-for- profit free health clinics in the Richmond area and other parts of Virginia.
  • Kickin’ 4 Kidz: a community soccer festival hosted by VCU’s Center for Sport Leadership for more than 200 children to teach them the game of soccer and mentor the children in a safe environment.
  • VCU-Virginia Mentoring Project: housed within the Division of Community Engagement, the Virginia Mentoring Partnership provides training and technical assistance to existing and developing mentor programs.
  • “Peep This” Documentary Film Project: an 11-week documentary camp created by Shawn Utsey, Ph.D., chair of the VCU African American Studies program, to teach at-risk teens how to plan and produce documentary films. Each teen created a five-minute documentary.
  • VCU-Carver Promise Partnership: a comprehensive relationship between VCU, three other local universities and the nearby Carver community to provide educational support to children in that neighborhood.

VCU students contributed an estimated 342,691 hours of community service in 2008-2009 through service-learning classes, student organization service projects and individual volunteering. More than 8,800 students were involved in academic service-learning or engaged in other forms of community service during that time period.

The "Peep This" documentary program, seen here, helps at-risk teens learn documentary skills and is one of six community service efforts highlighted in VCU's application to the 2009 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. Photo by Shawn Utsey, chairman of African American Studies.