University named to President's Community Service Honor Roll for second consecutive year

Pacific is among just 642 colleges and universities nationally to earn the distinction.



Pacific University has been named to the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the second consecutive year.

The honor roll is part of the Corporation for National and Community Service's strategic commitment to engage millions of college students in service, and celebrate the critical role of higher education in strengthening communities.

It recognizes higher education institutions that reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes for their communities.

Pacific is just one of nine colleges or universities in Oregon, and 642 junior or senior colleges nationally, to be named to the honor roll.

The program places a strong emphasis on long-term institutional support of community service, with special consideration of how service results in measurable improvement in a community.

The CNCS considers all aspects of a college or university's community service efforts, including course work, student-led co-curricular activities and staff initiatives.

During the 2010-11 academic year, 842 Pacific students engaged in academic service learning, and an additional 1,152 students engaged in a variety of community service activities, resulting in a total of 171,561 community service hours.

Leading the way were students from the College of Education and schools of Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy and Physical Therapy, as each program saw 100 percent of its students participate in both community service and academic service-learning courses last year.

Optometry and Dental Hygiene students provided care to more than 3,200 individuals, including low-income and uninsured residents, via mobile wellness clinics.

Among many other initiatives Pacific students participated in were mentoring of girls at nearby elementary schools, raising funds for various non-profit organizations, providing area children with a safe place to trick-or-treat on Halloween and volunteering at the local Severe Weather Shelter.

"This honor truly reflects the contributions from each of our four colleges," said Stephanie Stokamer, director of Pacific's Center for Civic Engagement.

CNCS commended the University for three exemplary projects the institution undertook in 2010-11: "Give & Go," "Nicaragua Project" and "French in Elementary Schools."

Give & Go redirects reusable items from landfills to local community organizations. More than 500 students, with the assistance of Pacific staff and community volunteers, filled 50 truckloads of items, including packaged food, clothing and housewares worth an estimated $4,800.

This year, Give & Go is scheduled for May 11-16 and includes community partners Adelante Mujeres, CREATE, Forest Grove Family Resource Center, Foster Closet Inc, HomePlate, and St. Vincent de Paul.

Through the annual Friends of Nicaragua project, College of Health Professions students, faculty and staff traveled to Central America during winter break and provided more than 1,200 hours of health-related services for Nicaraguan elders, who commonly experience poverty and chronic disease due to the country's dire economic conditions.

French in Elementary Schools is one of the courses at Pacific that meets the College of Arts & Sciences Civic Engagement Cornerstone requirement for graduation. Pacific students teach French to approximately 30 elementary school students in Forest Grove.

Offered each semester, the course is open to students who have returned from study abroad eager to share their knowledge, as well as students with advanced language skills considering a career in language education.

Pacific University is a nationally recognized institution devoted to excellence in teaching and learning. In this spirit, Pacific strongly emphasizes civic engagement by challenging its students, faculty and staff to actively meet the needs of their communities, whether locally or globally.

For more information, please call (503) 352-1570 or email cce@pacificu.edu.

Click here for the 2011 Community Service Honor Roll Story


Posted by Joe Lang (jlang@pacificu.edu) on May 2, 2012 at 4:05 PM

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