Georgia Southern students performed more than 46,000 hours of community service last year
From Aug. 1, 2018 to July 31, 2019, Georgia Southern University students performed 46,415 community service hours. The hours had an estimated monetary impact of $932,104.
“The number of service hours our students log is a testament to their character,” said Jodi Kennedy, director of Leadership and Community Engagement (OLCE), through which almost 40% of the hours were coordinated. “Students come to Georgia Southern University and want to invest in the community, which is demonstrated in the hours that they commit to serving others. One of my favorite things to see is students volunteering and then going on to serve in leadership roles in our office and leading their peers in service.”
Kennedy said the community service hours don’t just fulfill a requirement for the students. They have an opportunity to build a network of peers, community members and friends.
“Students are building relationships that could lead to future employment opportunities, internships or leadership roles within the nonprofit agencies they are serving,” she said. “They are also developing important skills that can be used in future careers and leadership roles, such as communication, problem solving and organizational skills. Students often also find their passion through volunteering.”
OLCE hosts 17 volunteer trips every week on the Statesboro and Savannah campuses through Serve912, the office’s local service initiative. OLCE also puts on bigger community service events each year, including the Alternative Break Program, which offers students the opportunity to serve various communities throughout the southeast, the United States and the world during extended breaks from class and some weekends. Another major event is Treasure Savannah, which is a day of service hosted annually on the Armstrong Campus where students, faculty and staff give back to the community by doing two hours of service and participating in a reflection activity.
To help students log their service hours, OLCE is unveiling a campaign this fall called Track Your Impact in order to encourage students to log their service hours and make it known that the opportunity to log hours is available. Kennedy said she has two words for students wondering if they should get involved in programs offered by OLCE.
“Try it,” she said. “Our programs are great for students who are looking to meet people, learn about their individual talents and invest in the community. There are a variety of offerings in our office that can easily work around a student’s class schedule, and there are multiple opportunities for students to take on leadership roles.”
For more information about OLCE and the service programs they offer, visit students.georgiasouthern.edu/LeadServe/.
Georgia Southern University, a public Carnegie Doctoral/R2 institution founded in 1906, offers 141 degree programs serving nearly 26,500 students through nine colleges on three campuses in Statesboro, Savannah, Hinesville and online instruction. A leader in higher education in southeast Georgia, the University provides a diverse student population with expert faculty, world-class scholarship and hands-on learning opportunities. Georgia Southern creates lifelong learners who serve as responsible scholars, leaders and stewards in their communities. Visit GeorgiaSouthern.edu.