As one of only two California community colleges honored for providing students with access to high quality service-learning educational opportunities, College of the Canyons has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for a seventh consecutive year.
This year, College of the Canyons is one of only 31 higher education institutions in the state to appear on the Honor Roll. Mira Costa College in Oceanside is the only other community college to be recognized.
“We are proud to help strengthen our community and give our students an opportunity to contribute to its collective good through involvement in service-learning,” College of the Canyons Chancellor Dr. Dianne Van Hook said. “It truly is a ‘win-win-win’ situation. Our students benefit from the experience, the organizations they serve benefit from the added help, and that ultimately benefits the clients of those organizations.”
Administered by the Corporation for National and Community Service, inclusion on the annual Honor Roll is the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service learning and civic engagement.
Originally inspired by the thousands of college students who traveled across the country to support relief efforts along the Gulf Coast after Hurricane Katrina, the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll initiative is meant to celebrate the transformative power and volunteer spirit that exists within the higher education community.
With the belief that students can make valuable contributions to the world while gaining educational experience, College of the Canyons strives to increase community involvement, strengthen student leadership skills and build meaningful community relationships by carrying out various service-learning projects.
College of the Canyons has been included on the honor roll every year since its inception in 2006.
“We are excited to once again receive this award, attesting to the college’s continued commitment to providing hands-on learning opportunities for our students,” said Anthony Michaelides, Director, Career Services at the college. “This honor has been made possible through the dedication and involvement of our faculty, staff, students and the participating community agencies.”
In the academic year for which the college was recognized and awarded, service-learning projects at COC included the participation of roughly 57 faculty members from the college’s various departments, 86 non-profit community-based organizations and 717 students.
Recent College of the Canyons service-learning projects have included student placements with The Wildlife Learning Center, Penny Lane Centers, Heads Up Therapy with Horses, William S. Hart Museum, Placerita Canyon Nature Center, Friends of Castaic Lake, Help the Children, Habitat for Humanity, Single Mothers Outreach, the Boys & Girls Club, SCV Senior Center, LARC Ranch, and Adult Health Day Care of SCV.
“Student, faculty and agency feedback has all been positive,” Michaelides said, “and as a result the college’s service-learning program has seen tremendous growth in the past year.”
The Corporation for National and Community Service oversees the Honor Roll in collaboration with the Department of Education, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact and the American Council on Education.
Honorees are chosen based on a series of selection factors, including the scope and innovation of service projects, percentage of student participation in service activities, incentives for service and the extent to which the school offers academic service-learning courses.
For more information about service-learning opportunities at College of the Canyons please contact the COC service-learning office, 661-362-3231.