HWS Receives National Recognition for Community Service – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

HWS Receives National Recognition for Community Service

For the sixth consecutive year, Hobart and William Smith Colleges have been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, a federal initiative that recognizes higher education institutions that reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities.

Community_Service_1Launched in 2006 by the Corporation for National and Community Service, the Honor Roll’s Presidential Award is the highest federal recognition an institution can receive for its commitment to community, service-learning, and civic engagement. Honorees are selected based on a series of factors, like scope and innovation of service projects, percentage of student participation in service activities, incentives for service, and the extent to which the school offers service-learning courses.

“The honor is reflective of the long-standing and evolving commitment HWS has made to and with the community,” says Katie Flowers, director of the Center for Community Engagement and Service Learning (CCESL). “The collaborative learning that occurs through service is impactful and contributes to how students become alums who commit to leading ‘lives of consequence.’”

Community_Service_3Hobart and William Smith were named to the Honor Roll with distinction in the “general” category. The Colleges’ submission highlighted three unique HWS community service initiatives, including:

  • Geneva Heroes, a program that pairs HWS students with local middle and high school students to lead them in teambuilding, leadership and service activities.
  • Geneva 2020, a collaborative effort between HWS, Geneva City School District and many partners in ensuring students are supported from ‘cradle to career.’
  • Arts Experience: A Festival Celebrating Inclusion and the Arts, a partnership between HWS and the Collaborative of the Finger Lakes that provides the community with an opportunity for people with and without disabilities to explore various means of expression through the arts.

“HWS has a long-standing tradition of engaging with our community,” says Associate Professor of Education Mary Kelly, a co-coordinator of the Arts Experience Festival. “I’m proud that the Festival was able to build upon that strong foundation and become recognized on a national platform that celebrates higher education’s commitment to community-campus partnerships.”

This is the seventh time HWS have been named to the Honor Roll since the program’s inception. Last year, the Colleges’ were one of only four institutions in the nation to be named for the President’s Award for Education Community Service.