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W&L Named to The President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll

For the second time in as many years, Washington and Lee University has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction.

The honor roll, launched in 2006, annually highlights the role colleges and universities play in solving community problems and in placing students on a lifelong path of civic engagement, by recognizing institutions that achieve meaningful, measureable outcomes in the communities they serve.

The 2012 Honor Roll recipients were announced at the American Council on Education’s 94th annual meeting on March 12, in Los Angeles.

According to data compiled by Washington and Lee’s Office of Institutional Effectiveness, 1,278 W&L students engaged in 45,390 documented hours of community service during the 2011-12 academic year.

Washington and Lee’s entry focused on three programs that illustrate the University’s commitment to service:

  • Johnson Opportunity Grants: As part of the Johnson Program in Leadership and Integrity, 21 student grant winners completed 1,155 service hours. In the summer of 2010, 12 grantees participated in activities around the world, including teaching underprivileged students in rural Ecuador; promoting the legal protection of human rights at the National University of Ireland’s Irish Centre for Human Rights; assisting refugees who have come to Israel from Africa; and serving in medical clinics in Peru and Mexico.
  • Project NEXT Middle School Enrichment Program: Developed by W&L’s Teacher Education Program in collaboration with Rockbridge County public schools, Project NEXT involved 50 W&L students in 1,020 hours of service mentoring 163 Rockbridge County students. The program received a three-year grant to help public schools improve their graduation rates by offering homework assistance and after-school enrichment to help students see themselves as successful learners.
  • Shepherd Alliance: In the summer of 2010, the alliance, a component of W&L’s groundbreaking Shepherd Program for the Interdisciplinary Study of Poverty and Human Capability, placed 63 students in summer internships, where they contributed 19,000 service hours and served 1,500 individuals. The undergraduate and law interns worked at 48 agencies in urban and rural locations in the U.S. and abroad.

For 2012, 110 colleges and universities were named to the Honor Roll with Distinction. Washington and Lee is one of two institutions from Virginia to be so honored; James Madison University is the other.

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. It leads President Barack Obama’s national call-to-service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit NationalService.gov.