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FSU’s A STAR! in Western Maryland Celebrates 20 Years of Service
09/18/2013

FSU’s A STAR! in Western Maryland Celebrates 20 Years of Service
The 2013-2014 ECHOSTARS! members, part of the AmeriCorps program at Frostburg State University, posed for a picture at the beginning of the fall semester.

A STAR! in Western Maryland, an AmeriCorps program based at Frostburg State University, is proudly celebrating 20 years of service this month. For two decades A STAR! has provided “direct, substantive service programs that improve the literacy of children, enhance the health care and living conditions of children and elderly people, help at-risk youth by offering after-school programs, improve shelter and support services for low-income families and preserve the environment for the Western Maryland communities.”

Established in 1994 through a collaborative effort at FSU between the Office of Student and Educational Services and Student and Community Involvement, A STAR! started with 20 AmeriCorps service volunteers serving seven community partners in Allegany and Garrett counties. Over the next 20 years, A STAR! has expanded to serve the four westernmost counties in Maryland, providing capacity building, environmental stewardship, academic enrichment, health and wellness as well as volunteer management throughout Western Maryland. Each year the program reaches over 6,500 beneficiaries through more than 64,000 hours of service provided by over 125 AmeriCorps members.

The ECHOSTARS program is comprised of primarily incoming freshman at FSU who are in a unique living, learning, serving environment. While completing their freshman year, they are charged with providing 300 hours of direct service throughout Allegany and into Garrett counties at identified service sites such as Read to Succeed, Frostburg Senior Center, Tech Wizards, Salvation Army, Beall Elementary and Kids Corner.

The base of the A STAR! program is comprised of full- and part-time stipend members who complete between 900 and 1,700 hours of direct service through 17 identified partnerships. In Allegany and Garrett counties, these partners include the FSU Center for Creative Writing, Read to Succeed, VOICE, Frostburg Grows, Foundation for Frostburg, Allegany College of Maryland, Mountainside Community Mediation, Mountain City Traditional Arts, Garrett College, Garrett County Health Department and University of Maryland Extension Office.

For more information, contact Lisa Clark, A STAR! in Western Maryland director, at 301-697-3359.

Situated in the mountains of Allegany County, Frostburg State University is one of the 12 institutions of the University System of Maryland. FSU is a comprehensive, residential regional university and serves as an educational and cultural center for Western Maryland. For more information, visit www.frostburg.edu or facebook.com/frostburgstateuniversity. Follow FSU on Twitter @frostburgstate.

-end-

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of News and Media Services
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-3171
Fax: 301-687-7589
E-mail: news@frostburg.edu