Mount Mercy receives Presidential Community Service Award

Mount Mercy College 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.

More than 1,000 Mount Mercy students participated in forms of community service last year, which included service projects both inside and outside their academic learning, which accumulated to more than 12,000 hours of service work. 

More than 200 hours were devoted to flood recovery efforts, spanning everything from serving local businesses to helping repair houses, to documenting the history of the flood in collaboration with the Cedar Rapids History Center. Other notable service projects include Halloween on the Hill, where Mount Mercy students, faculty and staff open residence halls for children to experience fun and games in a safe environment; Second Saturday service projects, where students spend a Saturday morning volunteering; and Project America, where students team up with Aging Services to assist the elderly with yard work and housing projects. 

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. On campuses across the country, thousands of students joined their faculty to develop innovative programs and projects to meet local needs using the skills gained in their classrooms. 

“Congratulations to Mount Mercy College 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.”

“Mount Mercy is proud to live out its mission of mercy and community outreach in ways that touch the lives of those living and working around us,” says Mount Mercy President Christopher Blake. “Our students live out that call to serve each and every day, and we are proud of their efforts in continuing our rich tradition.”
 
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.

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

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