West Virginia Northern Community College is the only two-year institution in the state to be honored with a listing on the national President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for 2015. In addition, WVNCC is the only West Virginia institution to be cited each year since inception of the federal Honor Roll in 2006.
The Community Service Honor Roll’s 2015 listing was announced in early fall. It recognizes institutions of higher education that support exemplary community service programs and raise the visibility of effective practices in campus community partnerships.
The Corporation for National and Community Service has administered the award since 2006 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, Campus Compact and the Interfaith Youth Core.
Dr. Vicki L. Riley, Northern’s president, said, “Faculty, staff and students at the college understand the benefits of community service. Their work to help others is something they enjoy doing at a personal level and those being assisted always are gratified by their generosity. I’m proud the college has been honored for so many years at the national level for this commitment.”
Shannon Payton, Northern’s student activities director, explained the college participated in numerous community service projects for 2015. Three of those projects included the college’s Secret Santa Program in which gifts were provided for 140 children of students in need during the holidays. For its first project, a new WVNCC student club, SCARSI, which stands for Students Caring About Regional Social Issues, collected personal hygiene items and blankets for the Greater Wheeling Homeless Coalition. In addition, WVNCC was named as a gold level sponsor for the Ohio County Relay for Life event to benefit the American Cancer Society. The B&O Building auditorium, and other rooms, are used for meetings in the months leading to the relay; Northern faculty are members of the committee and on the day of the relay WVNCC has been the only college in the area to participate and win the best theme tent 10 years consecutively.
Institutions are chosen for the listing based on a series of selection factors, including the scope and innovation of service projects, the extent to which service-learning is embedded in the curriculum, the school’s commitment to long-term campus-community partnerships and measurable community outcomes as a result of the service.