Assumption College Earns Place on National Honor Roll for Community Service

Assumption College has for the third time been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. This designation is the highest honor a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement, and places Assumption among 690 colleges and universities that have received this honor.

“Assumption College has a long history of service-learning and believes strongly in preparing our graduates to be active leaders and participants in an ever-changing world,” said Assumption College President Francesco Cesareo. “We are honored to receive this prestigious award and owe much of it to the students. They are the energy driving our commitment, and they are the ones who make it all happen.”

Community service is a popular activity among Assumption students. It enhances students’ liberal arts education and creates an on-campus environment that is inspiring and supportive of civic responsibility and community action. During the 2011-2012 academic year, Assumption students volunteered 139,000 hours in and around Worcester and throughout the world.

Assumption’s Community Service Learning (CSL) program is fusion between academic inquiry and community service. An example of the benefit of CSL classes is Assumption’s involvement with the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program at Worcester’s Plumley Village housing complex. Each year, approximately 20 Assumption accounting students help the residents with basic income tax return preparation. The students processed 2011 tax returns for close to 350 individuals and families, totaling $750,000 in federal and state refunds. Across Worcester, $3.1 million went back to taxpayers in returns that were processed through the VITA program.

Other examples of Assumption’s service programs are SEND Service Immersion Trips through the Office of Campus Ministry. SEND trips offer students the opportunity to travel across the country and world to partner with nonprofit organizations dedicated to helping those in need. In addition, the College’s Reach Out Center, Assumption’s community service organization for students, connects students with many organizations in Greater Worcester. More service examples can be found here.

“Congratulations to Assumption College, its faculty and students for their commitment to service, both in and out of the classroom,” said Wendy Spencer, CEO of the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). “Through their work, institutions of higher education are helping improve their local communities and create a new generation of leaders by challenging students to go beyond the traditional college experience and solve local challenges.”

Inspired by the thousands of college students who traveled across the country to support relief efforts along the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina, CNCS has administered the award since 2006 and manages the program 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 and Campus Compact. The 2013 Honor Roll recipients were announced at the American Council on Education’s 95th Annual Meeting, titled “Leading Change,” on March 4 in Washington, D.C.

Kimberly Dunbar, Director of Public Affairs, Assumption College @AssumptionNews