WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) has honored Frostburg State University as a leader among institutions of higher education for their support of volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement.
FSU was admitted to the 2012 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for engaging its students, faculty and staff in meaningful service that achieves measurable results in the community. FSU students’ service, in particular, covers a wide range of volunteer activities, including tutoring children, helping with tax returns, cleaning streets and shoveling snow, raising money for numerous charities, helping rebuild New Orleans, performing environmental projects and, particularly, serving areas of need in the Western Maryland region.
“It makes me proud when I see the commitment to service among Frostburg’s students, faculty and staff,” said FSU President Jonathan Gibralter. “For our students, their efforts not only enrich those they serve, but that experience will enhance their understanding of the society in which they live and their place in it.”
FSU students collectively average more than 30,000 hours of service each year, through programs such as ECHOSTARS (Empowering Communities, Helping Others), a first-year, living-learning-serving experience for students committed to making a change in the community. Through this program, students become a part of a growing student service movement by providing volunteer service as reading tutors, youth mentors and more in the Frostburg area. Other programs include the VOICE (Volunteer Opportunities in the Community Environment) Clearinghouse program, which connects students, faculty and staff with volunteer opportunities in Western Maryland, and Relay for Life, FSU’s best-attended annual event that raised $52,470 to support the American Cancer Society in 2011.
“Through service, these institutions are creating the next generation of leaders by challenging students to tackle tough issues and create positive impacts in the community,” said Robert Velasco, Acting CEO of CNCS. “We applaud the Honor Roll schools, their faculty and students for their commitment to make service a priority in and out of the classroom. Together, service and learning increase civic engagement while fostering social innovation among students, empowering them to solve challenges within their communities.”
“Preparing students to participate in our democracy and providing them with opportunities to take on local and global issues in their course work are as central to the mission of education as boosting college completion and closing the achievement gap,” said Eduardo Ochoa, the U.S. Department of Education’s assistant secretary for postsecondary education. “The Honor Roll schools should be proud of their work to elevate the role of service-learning on their campuses. Galvanizing their students to become involved in projects that address pressing concerns and enrich their academic experience has a lasting impact – both in the communities in which they work and on their own sense of purpose as citizens of the world. I hope we’ll see more and more colleges and universities following their lead.”
The President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll recognizes higher education institutions that reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities. Inspired by the thousands of college students who traveled across the country to support relief efforts along the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina, the initiative celebrates the transformative power and volunteer spirit that exists within the higher education community.
The Corporation for National and Community Service, which has administered the Honor Roll since 2006, admitted over 642 colleges and universities for their impact on issues from literacy and neighborhood revitalization to supporting at-risk youth. Of that total, 513 were named to the Honor Roll, 110 received the recognition of Honor Roll with distinction, 14 were identified as finalists and five received the Presidential Award.
FSU was a member of last year’s Honor Roll, as well as in 2008, and in 2000, was awarded the first-ever Higher Education Award for Leadership in National Service by the CNCS.
On campuses across the country, millions of college students are engaged in innovative projects to meet local needs, often using the skills learned in classrooms. In 2010, 3.1 million college students dedicated more than 312 million hours of service to communities across the country, service valued at more than $6.6 billion. Business and law students offer tax preparation and legal services, and college student volunteers provide meals, create parks, rebuild homes after disasters, conduct job training, run senior service programs and much more.
The Corporation for National and Community Service is a strong partner with the nation’s colleges and universities in supporting community service and service-learning. Last year, CNCS provided more than $200 million in support to institutions of higher education, including grants to operate service programs and the Segal AmeriCorps Education Awards for college tuition and student loan repayment. CNCS is a catalyst for service-learning programs nationwide that connect community service with academic curricula. Through these programs, in classes and in extracurricular activities, college students serve their communities while strengthening their academic and civic skills.
CNCS oversees the Honor Roll in collaboration with the U.S. Departments of Education and Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact and the American Council on Education. Honorees are chosen based on a series of selection 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. For a full list of recipients, visit www.NationalService.gov/HonorRoll.
For more information, contact Patrick O’Brien in FSU’s Office of Volunteerism and National Service at 301-687-4210 or email@example.com.
The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more than five million Americans in service through its Senior Corps, AmeriCorps and Learn and Serve America programs and leads President Obama’s national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit www.NationalService.gov.
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.