Tuesday, March 05, 2013

UIS named to President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for fifth year in a row

The University of Illinois Springfield has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for a fifth consecutive year. The award is one of the highest federal recognitions a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning and civic engagement.

“We’re very proud that UIS has been named to the Honor Roll for the fifth time in a row,” said UIS Chancellor Susan J. Koch. “This accomplishment is another great example of ‘Leadership lived’ on this campus. Our students take advantage of the abundance of opportunities presented to them and are making a difference.”

During 2011-12 academic year, UIS students spent 65,181 hours engaged in community service. A total of 830 students engaged in some type of community service, with 476 students volunteering at least 20 hours.

“65,000 hours of service is an impressive number, but the impact and leadership that number represents is even more extraordinary,” said Mark Dochterman, director of the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center.

UIS students spent over 3,000 hours volunteering with the Springfield Public School District’s AVID Program during the academic year 2011-12. The program is dedicated to helping students achieve their goals of going to college. The AVID class, held within the regular school day, provides support, academic monitoring and tutoring to nearly 700 middle and high school students in Springfield.

Over 150 UIS students participated in the annual Holiday Stars Project, a month-long food drive benefiting the Central Illinois Foodbank. Through the project, the UIS community provided 5,600 meals to central Illinois community members. Additionally, over 200 students, staff, and faculty members planted 3,000 trees at two Springfield parks on Arbor Day 2012 as part of the annual Springfest service project.

“Houses were built, students were tutored, families were fed, trees were planted, tornado victims were aided, and the list goes on,” said Dochterman. “This list and the recognition UIS has received today are a testament to the importance of the roles our students, faculty and staff take in the Springfield community and beyond.”

The Corporation for National and Community Service, which has administered the Honor Roll since 2006, annually highlights the role colleges and universities play in solving community problems and placing more students on a lifelong path of civic engagement by recognizing institutions that achieve meaningful, measureable outcomes in the communities they serve.

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.

The corporation 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.

For more information on the award, contact Mark Dochterman, director of the UIS Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center at 217/206-8448 or email mdoch2@uis.edu.

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