McKendree On President’s Community Service Honor Roll Once Again

2/25/2010

Lebanon, Ill. – For a fourth consecutive year, McKendree University has been named to the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service learning and civic engagement.

The Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers the annual Honor Roll award, recognized more than 700 colleges and universities for their impact on issues from poverty and homelessness to environmental justice.

McKendree is one of 26 Illinois colleges and universities, and one of only three in southern Illinois, chosen for the Honor Roll. Six colleges and universities were Presidential Awardees, with an additional 115 on the Distinction List and 621 schools named as Honor Roll members. Click here for a full list of Honor Roll recipients.

Honorees are chosen based on a series of selection factors including the scope and innovation of service projects, percentage of student participation in service activities, incentives for service, and the extent to which the school offers academic service-learning courses.

“Community service is an important part of a McKendree education,” noted Dr. James M. Dennis, university president. “We appreciate this recognition of our efforts to incorporate service learning into our academic curriculum. We’re proud of our dedicated students who volunteer thousands of hours in the community each semester.”

“We are thrilled to be selected once again for this honor,” added Dr. Lyn Huxford, professor of sociology. “As coordinator of our Center for Public Service, I get to see and hear firsthand the incredible impact our volunteer programs have on our students and our community partners. It is truly a privilege to share in McKendree’s campus-wide commitment to civic engagement.”

The Center for Public Service and its student-led McKendree Community Action Team coordinate a variety of volunteer activities throughout the school year. Students tutor elementary school children, mentor disadvantaged youths, socialize with nursing home residents, and help at animal shelters, hospices and food pantries. “Into the Streets” community outreach activities are part of students’ introduction to campus life. In March, several McKendree students and faculty members will take an “alternative spring break” to Jamaica, where they will work with local residents to build houses and help out at elementary schools.

McKendree was a finalist for the Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter Partnership Foundation Award for Campus-Community Collaboration in 2008.

“Congratulations to McKendree University and its students for their dedication to service and commitment to improving their local communities,” said Patrick Corvington, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service. “Our nation’s students are a critical part of the equation and vital to our efforts to tackle the most persistent challenges we face. They have achieved impactful results and demonstrated the value of putting knowledge into practice to help renew America through service.”

College students make a significant contribution to the volunteer sector; in 2009, 3.16 million students performed more than 300 million hours of service, according to the Volunteering in America study released by the Corporation. Each year, the Corporation invests more than $150 million in fostering a culture of service on college campuses through grants awarded by its programs; the education awards that AmeriCorps members receive at the conclusion of their term of service to pay for college; and through support of training, research, recognition, and other initiatives to spur college service.

The Corporation oversees the Honor Roll in collaboration with the Department of Education, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact and the American Council on Education.

 

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McKendree University ranks among the top 10 percent of "Best Baccalaureate Colleges” in the nation and in the “Great Schools, Great Prices” category by U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges 2010." Founded in 1828, the historic Lebanon, Ill., campus is 25 miles from downtown St. Louis. McKendree also has campuses in Louisville and Radcliff, Ky., and offers programs at Scott Air Force Base and other sites throughout Illinois and Kentucky. www.mckendree.edu

The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more 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.