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West Virginia Northern Community College again has earned a listing on the national President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. WVNCC is the only West Virginia institution to be cited each year since inception of the listing in 2006.
The Community Service Honor Roll 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.
For 2014, the CNCS selected four presidential winners, 16 finalists for that top honor and more than 700 other institutions for their exemplary community service.
Dr. Martin J. Olshinsky, Northern’s retiring president, said he continues to be “heartened by the commitment of our students, faculty and staff to meaningful community service projects. Voluntarism remains important at West Virginia Northern.”
According to Shannon Payton, Northern’s student activities director, the college participated in numerous community service projects for 2014. Heading the list in terms of numbers of participants and hours spent volunteering were Northern’s pledge to the Military Mail Call program, which resulted in thousands of letters being written to military personnel stationed at home and abroad; an internal Secret Santa program which provided gifts to hundreds of children of students in need; a collection of bottled water that was driven to the Charleston area for residents there who were victims of a water crisis because of an industrial river spill; and participation in a statewide canned food drive challenge.
“I’m proud of the students and staff at the Wheeling, Weirton and New Martinsville campuses because they show how much they care every day,” Payton said.
CNCS honorees are chosen 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.