Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Mercyhurst University has been named to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll “with distinction” for its commitment to volunteerism, service learning and civic engagement.
Mercyhurst has achieved a place on the President’s Honor Roll every year since its inception in 2006, three times earning the more exclusive rank of “with distinction.” The most recent honor is based on the university’s service initiatives during the 2012-2013 academic year, when an estimated 2,650 students delivered 48,750 hours of community service, said Colin Hurley, director of community engagement.
In the fall of 2012, Mercyhurst celebrated its transition from college to university status by uniting faculty, staff and students in “The House that ‘Hurst Built,” a community project that mobilized 600 volunteers over the course of six weeks to build a Habitat for Humanity home for an Erie family.
For the first time, both the Mercyhurst University Erie and North East campuses implemented freshman service projects before the start of the fall 2012 classes. Altogether, more than 875 students and 100 student leaders and staff chaperones assisted 30 community organizations by completing much-needed service projects.
Alternative breaks generated more than 1,800 service hours from students traveling to do service, including trips to New Orleans (Hurricanes Katrina and Rita) and New Jersey (Hurricane Sandy), where they engaged in post-disaster cleanup efforts. Two Habitat for Humanity trips were taken, one to Mississippi and one to North Carolina, and several students traveled to Haiti to assist with post-earthquake projects.
The President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, conceived by the Corporation for National and Community Service, annually highlights the role colleges and universities play in solving community problems and placing more students on a lifelong path of civic engagement by recognizing institutions that achieve meaningful, measureable outcomes in the communities they serve.
“Mercyhurst University students embrace mission and motto by continuing to serve others with a Carpe Diem spirit,” Hurley said. “This honor is a testament of the strength and value of a Catholic, Mercy higher education where students serve as ambassadors of the university and as ambassadors of service for their future communities upon graduation.”
More information about Mercyhurst’s community service efforts can be found at the university’s service learning page. More information about the service award, as well as a full list of Honor Roll awardees, can be found here.