SPARTANBURG, S.C. –Wofford College is among the list of two-year and four-year colleges and universities around the country to be named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for 2006.
The first-ever awards were presented this week at the Campus Compact 20th Anniversary celebration in Chicago by Stephen Goldsmith, chairman of the Corporation for National and Community Service, an independent federal agency tasked with fostering an ethic of volunteerism and service in America. “Higher education is a powerful engine of civic engagement and is central to achieving the president’s vision of active citizens and connected communities,” he said.
Six colleges and universities received top recognition for extraordinary community service – three for aiding hurricane victims along the Gulf Coast and three for helping close neighbors. Nine other institutions received Katrina Compassion Awards for helping Gulf Coast communities recover; 10 others were named finalists for general community service, and 141 were recognized for distinguished community service. In total, 492 institutions of the nation’s more than 4,200 higher education institutions were recognized on the honor roll.
Elon University in North Carolina received the President’s Award for outstanding community service, and Furman University in Greenville, S.C., was recognized for distinction in Hurricane Katrina relief. Converse College and Spartanburg Methodist College in Spartanburg also were named to the Honor Roll.
The Honor Roll is co-sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service, the U.S. Department of Education, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, USA Freedom Corps, and the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation. The recognition is presented in cooperation with Campus Compact, a national coalition of nearly 1,000 college and university presidents, and supported by all the major national higher education associations.
The awards were presented a day after the Corporation for National and Community Service released a comprehensive report, “College Students Helping America,” which shows college student civic engagement rising significantly in recent years. The study, which used data collected by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics, showed that student volunteering increased approximately 20 percent from 2002 to 2005, and that 3.3 million college students serve their communities and nation. The study showed that college students between ages 16 to 24 are more likely to volunteer than cohorts in that age group who are not enrolled.
The Corporation for National and Community Service improves lives, strengthens communities, and fosters civic engagement through service and volunteering. Each year, the Corporation provides opportunities for more than 2 million Americans of all ages and backgrounds to serve their communities and country through Senior Corps, AmeriCorps and Learn and Serve America. For more information, go to http://www.nationalservice.gov.