Lawrence Tech wins recognition for community service
Friday, March 16th, 2012
Lawrence Tech has been named to the 2012 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the first time by the Corporation for National and Community Service.
Launched in 2006, this community service honor roll annually highlights the role colleges and universities play in solving community problems and placing more students on a lifelong path of civic engagement. It recognizes institutions that achieve meaningful, measurable outcomes in the communities they serve.
During the 2010-2011 academic year at Lawrence Tech, more than 800 students served nearly 5,000 community engagement hours in a variety of settings, according to Melissa Grunow, director of Leadership Programs and First Year Experience at Lawrence Tech.
“I think more than anything, we have established a culture of service on campus that is university-wide. Students understand the connection between leadership and service, and realize the importance of outreach in our communities,” Grunow said. “Although there were small ‘pockets’ of service and community engagement at Lawrence Tech in the past, we did not have any kind of centralized volunteer initiative until 2009.”
The 2010-2011 academic year was the first time Lawrence Tech offered monthly service projects and started to build a database of regular volunteers who come to multiple projects each year. The database has grown to nearly 500 students, and we host, on average, two service projects per year.
There are now a variety of opportunities that students can get involved in service-learning or community engagement. All students who take University Seminar and Leadership Models and Practices participate in an academic service-learning project.
The Office of Leadership Programs & First Year Experience organizes and hosts, at minimum, one service project each month. These projects typically take place on a Saturday and are open to all Lawrence Tech students, faculty, and staff. In 2010-2011, those projects included:
The Office of Leadership Programs and First Year Experience often partners with student organizations on campus that encourage or require their members to participate in volunteer activities. The office also has helped send students volunteer to teach English in China and build homes in Haiti.
Some student organizations have done their own projects to support the community. For instance, the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity assists the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society with its Light the Night walks every year.