Cleveland State was admitted to the 2013 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for engaging its students, faculty and staff in meaningful service that achieves measurable results in the community.
This is the second time CSCC has been named to the Honor Roll; the first time was in 2010.
The President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, launched in 2006, 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.
A total of 690 higher education institutions were named to this year’s Honor Roll, but only 33 community colleges were named to the list.
Combined, the Honor Roll awardees engaged 3.1 million students in community service for a total of 118 million service hours. That’s 2.5 billion dollars in value to communities across the country.
“Congratulations to Cleveland State Community College, its faculty and students for its commitment to service, both in and out of the classroom,” said Wendy Spencer, chief executive officer of CNCS. “Through its 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.”
“For Cleveland State to be one of only 33 community colleges named to the 2013 President’s Higher Education Honor Roll is a tremendous compliment,” stated Susan Webb-Curtis, director of Cooperative Education and Service-Learning.
“Our administration and faculty have made a serious commitment to implementing service-learning activities in our classes over the past five years, and this honor roll recognition is evidence of that dedication. We are so proud that over 50 percent of our full-time faculty members have now incorporated service-learning in their courses. This national recognition is a result of their commitment and willingness to embrace this hands-on teaching method.”
Cleveland State’s Service-Learning program has experienced tremendous growth since its inception in 2008.
While Webb-Curtis was asked to establish the early infrastructure for the program, she credits innovative faculty pioneers, great community partners, and the addition of Sherry Holloway to the CSCC Service-Learning program in 2010 as being vital to the continued growth and firm establishment of the program.
Webb-Curtis said, “Sherry Holloway, CSCC’s Service-Learning coordinator, has been a tremendous asset at our college. Her creative ideas, networking skills, and support of our faculty, students, and community partners have been instrumental in our program making the great strides that it has in recent years. With Sherry’s guidance, our faculty’s dedication, and outstanding community agencies as partners, our students are making a positive difference in our area communities.
“At the same time, these service experiences are making a difference in our student’s educational experience. Cleveland State is committed to assisting our students on the road to becoming civic-minded graduates.”
“We were ecstatic to hear that Cleveland State was named to the 2013 President’s Higher Education Honor Roll,” stated Holloway.
“We appreciate the organization’s recognition of our dedicated team of faculty, staff, students and community partners. It is my honor to serve this caring team and my privilege to share their stories of community outreach.”
Tennessee had 23 colleges and universities named to the 2013 Honor Roll.
“Tennessee is very fortunate to have a strong Tennessee Campus Compact Office and the guidance of a passionate and nationally involved executive director, Dr. Mani Hull,” stated Webb-Curtis.
Three community colleges in Tennessee were selected—Cleveland State, Southwest Tennessee and Volunteer State.”
The Tennessee Campus Compact is a member of the Campus Compact, a national coalition of almost 1,200 college and university presidents — representing some 6 million students — who are committed to fulfilling the civic purposes of higher education. As the only national higher education association dedicated solely to campus-based civic engagement, Campus Compact promotes public and community service that develops students’ citizenship skills, helps campuses forge effective community partnerships, and provides resources and training for faculty seeking to integrate civic and community-based learning into the curriculum.
“I think this college is very fortunate to have people like Susan Webb-Curtis and Sherry Holloway in that we have built a fabulous service-learning initiative here at the college,” stated Dr. Carl Hite, CSCC president.
“Over 50 percent of the faculty is engaged in service-learning, and what we have discovered is that when students are engaged in their learning they learn a lot more. One of the advantages of service-learning is they are learning, but they are also helping somebody in some way do something—whether that is on campus or off, so I’m very proud of the fact that the college has been recognized for its accomplishments in service-learning.”
Holloway said, “The timeframe covered by the 2013 President’s Higher Education Community Honor Roll was July 1, 2011 through June 30, 2012. During that time, Cleveland State’s faculty and students demonstrated their dedication to Service-Learning and Civic Engagement by completing a variety of incredible projects. Their stories positioned CSCC for placement on the President’s Honor Roll.” Holloway shared the following story highlights:
Jason Holcomb, EMT instructor, and Alejandra Hoffer, associate professor of Spanish, led students on a service trip to Honduras, where they volunteered with Dr. Ronald Coleman of Doctors without Borders to provide free medical services to the citizens of impoverished Honduran communities. They also volunteered at area schools to provide quality educational experiences for underprivileged children.
Margaret Horten and Sandy Whetmore led Early Childhood Education students to develop Math and Science Kits for Pre-K through third-grade teachers at Taylor Elementary School.
Matt Ryerson, law professor, partnered with Bradley County Court Appointed Special Advocates, to provide students an opportunity to train and serve as volunteer advocates to the court, where they investigated allegations of child abuse and spoke on behalf of at-risk children.
Robert Brewer, associate professor of biology, partnered with the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service and the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency for students to volunteer in the Cherokee National Forest where they surveyed trout populations and treated infested hemlock forests.
Sonya Franklin, associate professor of nursing, partnered with the staff of Rhea County Volunteers in Medicine for sophomore nursing students to serve at a weekend Free Clinic, where they assisted medical professionals in providing services to people in need from across the region.
Suzanne Wood, associate professor and coordinator of Early Childhood Education, conducted the annual Happy Birthday Dr. Seuss literacy event to instill a love of reading in children and inspire parents/guardians to become better readers.
Dr. Denise King, vice president for Academic Affairs, said, “CSCC's Service-Learning program is characterized by the diverse nature of the projects our students undertake and the depth of learning afforded them by the collaboration of faculty and community agencies. CSCC takes the word 'community' in our name seriously and are pleased to be recognized for the high quality of our Service-Learning program.”