Ohio Wesleyan Earns U.S. Presidential Recognition for 6th Consecutive Year
By Cole Hatcher
Ohio Wesleyan University has earned recognition on the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for both general community service and interfaith community service. During the reporting period, OWU students logged more than 40,000 hours of service.
DELAWARE, Ohio – For the sixth consecutive year, Ohio Wesleyan University students are being recognized for their service to others with inclusion on the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll.
To earn a spot on the national list, Ohio Wesleyan students completed more than 40,000 hours of community service during the 2012-2013 academic year with a monetary value of more than $400,000. Locally, those efforts included tutoring 480 children and helping the youths to read a combined 4,070 books.
“Ohio Wesleyan’s commitment to service permeates nearly every aspect of campus life – the classroom, off-campus programs, Travel-Learning Courses, competitively funded Theory-to-Practice Grants, the Spring Break Mission Program, independent student initiatives, residential life activities, Greek life, athletics, student employment, and numerous campus organizations,” said Sally Leber, Ohio Wesleyan’s director of community service learning.
“During the 2012-2013 academic year, Ohio Wesleyan students engaged in community service and service learning in nearly every nonprofit agency in Delaware and in numerous schools in central Ohio,” Leber said. “Service initiatives extended to domestic locations such as Apalachin, New York; Detroit, Michigan; Erie, Pennsylvania; Fort Bragg, North Carolina; the Lakota Nation; Mims, Florida; New Orleans, Louisiana; and Washington, D.C. International service initiatives included Kenya, Tanzania, Namibia, Vietnam, Ghana, South Africa, El Salvador, Nicaragua, India, Romania, and Japan. These service opportunities are built upon our students’ ability to see, hear, and learn about real needs in our world.”
The 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll recognized higher education institutions in four categories: general community service, interfaith community service, economic opportunity, and education. Ohio Wesleyan is included on the list for general community service and on the list with distinction for interfaith community service.
In 2009, Ohio Wesleyan was one of three colleges and universities nationwide to receive a Presidential Award for Excellence in General Community Service – the highest honor a school can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.
Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Washington, D.C.-based Corporation for National and Community Service, discussed the vital connection between today’s college students and community service in announcing this year’s national honor roll earlier this month.
“Service and higher education go hand in hand,” Spencer said. “These schools are inspiring young leaders to roll up their sleeves and work alongside community members to solve problems. By recognizing the institutions who are leading the way to achieve meaningful, measurable results for the communities they serve, we also highlight the vital role all colleges and universities play in addressing community challenges and placing more students on a lifelong path of civic engagement.”
According to the latest “Volunteering and Civic Life in America” report, 3.1 million college students dedicated more than 118 million hours of service in 2012 – a contribution valued at $2.5 billion.
The Corporation for National and Community Service manages the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Education and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, as well as the American Council on Education, Campus Compact, and Interfaith Youth Core. Honorees are chosen based on such factors as 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.
To learn more about the national honor roll, visit myproject.nationalservice.gov/honorroll/Default.aspx. To learn more about community service at Ohio Wesleyan, visit https://www.owu.edu/about/offices-services/community-service-learning/
Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers 86 undergraduate majors and competes in 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Ohio Wesleyan combines a challenging, internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities to connect classroom theory with real-world experience. OWU’s 1,750 students represent 46 U.S. states and territories and 43 countries. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the latest President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction, and included in the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “best colleges” lists. Learn more at www.owu.edu.