Students, faculty and staff at Mount Aloysius College in Cresson have a reason to be proud.
They logged 12,780 hours of service with 217 community partners and completed 365 community projects in the past academic year.
The current industry valuation standard sets a rate of $21.79 per hour for community volunteer work. Using that figure, the college’s cumulative contribution is valued at nearly $280,000.
For its efforts, the college was recognized by the White House and named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll.
The honor – the second consecutive award for Mount Aloysius – is the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service learning and civic engagement.
Five categories of service are considered for the recognition: economic opportunity, education, environment, health and wellness, and veterans and deployed personnel.
Mount Aloysius President Tom Foley said the college’s commitment to community service is front and center in its mission.
“Right in our philosophy statement we make it clear: Students are encouraged to synthesize faith with learning, to develop competence with compassion and to put talents and gifts at the service of others,” he said. “Graduating community-ready citizens is a core function of Mount Aloysius College.”
The college’s service efforts were spread out over 18 Pennsylvania counties including Cambria and Somerset. Communities were served by Mount Aloysius volunteers in New Orleans and cleanup crews visited New Jersey after Superstorm Sandy. Service work took volunteers to Guyana and Honduras.
Students also were involved with Soles4Souls and World Help: Christmas for an Orphan, both international projects.
Mount Aloysius service efforts attracted four awards from Scholars in Service to Pennsylvania from the Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development. WISE Women of Blair County granted $5,000 for the third annual Pathways to Empowerment Workshop, and the Sisters of Mercy’s Healthy Community Initiative Grant for $4,000 was awarded for support of the Mercy Youth Initiative.