UMass Lowell Receives Presidential Community Service Award

03/02/2010
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LOWELL, Mass. ߝ UMass Lowell was recently 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.

Together with the 2008 recognition as a community-engaged university from the Carnegie Foundation for Excellence in Teaching, this award underscores UMass Lowell’s commitment to apply knowledge for the public good and support the development of community through teaching, research, scholarship and engagement.

"Congratulations to UMass Lowell 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.”

“We are grateful for this national recognition of UMass Lowell’s excellent service efforts that affect the lives of people locally, nationally and globally,” Chancellor Marty Meehan said.  “UMass Lowell is deeply committed to community engagement that serves the public good, enhances student learning, and advances faculty research and scholarship.”

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.

The three service projects highlighted in UMass Lowell’s application were the Village Empowerment in Peru (College of Engineering); Media Literacy and Engaged Education (Department of Community Health and Sustainability; Division of Media Services); and Project IMPACT (Office of School Partnerships). Three special focus area projects also were featured: Assistive Technology (College of Engineering); Bring Diversity to Nursing (Department of Nursing); and Serving Urban Youth and Families through Athletics (Athletics Department).

“Service learning is a key component of our experiential learning model," said Provost Ahmed Abdelal. "UMass Lowell’s students provide more than 44,000 hours of service each year, and we intend to increase those hours by expanding on current initiatives and adding new community initiatives, involving a greater percentage of our students.”

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

UMass Lowell joins the three other undergraduate campuses of the UMass system in achieving this recognition. The UMass system was recently awarded a Learn and Serve America grant for $471,000 from the Corporation for National and Community Service for the five UMass campuses to support a statewide effort to increase student involvement in their communities. At UMass Lowell, the project will be run by the Center for Family, Work and Community.

UMass Lowell, with a national reputation in science, engineering and technology, is committed to educating students for lifelong success in a diverse world and conducting research and outreach activities that sustain the economic, environmental and social health of the region. The University offers its 13,000 students more than 120 degree choices, internships, co-ops, five-year combined bachelor’s to master’s programs and doctoral studies in the colleges of Arts and Sciences, Engineering and Management, the School of Health and Environment, and the Graduate School of Education. www.uml.edu.

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.

For more information, contact media@uml.edu or 978-934-3224