Olivet College has been named to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, according to the Corporation for National & Community Service (CNCS). This designation is the highest honor a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.
Olivet is committed to the idea that to be a good citizen, one must contribute and offer one’s talents to society. The college’s goal is to provide a course-based Service Learning Project that will address community needs while at the same time instill in students the ethic of Education for Individual and Social Responsibility. The college-wide Service Learning focus combines first-hand community service experience with careful and extensive reflection on that experience.
Each student at Olivet completes a service learning course, with 40 or more hours of service outside of class, as a graduation requirement. In addition to many locally based projects, some classes travel to other countries, including economically depressed areas in the rural central high plains of Mexico and the southern coast of Jamaica. The college has also hosted an annual trip to aid with hurricane relief efforts in New Orleans, Mississippi and the East Coast since 2005, as well as numerous other service trips throughout the academic year.
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. This is the fourth time Olivet College has received the award.