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FROM THE PRESIDENT

March 15, 2010

Shepherd University was honored with two awards of which we are very proud.

In January, Shepherd's Contemporary American Theater Festival (CATF) was named to the West Virginia Living the Dream Service Organization Honor Roll, a designation for organizations that exemplify the principles of equality, tolerance, and peace as demonstrated by Martin Luther King, Jr. Several weeks later, Shepherd was recognized for the second year in a row by being named to the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in recognition of our commitment to student volunteerism, service learning, and civic engagement.

Ed Herendeen and CATF have a 20-year history of staging productions reflective of societal issues centered on equality, human suffering, and tolerance. As Ed says in the story about the festival in this issue of the magazine, CATF productions foster conversation about topics by getting "people to talk and debate and argue and share and open up."

Shepherd's Office of Student Community Service and Service Learning, under the enthusiastic guidance of Holly Morgan Frye, coordinates student volunteer outreach in the community. In 2009, 29,000 hours of outreach were logged by students, ranging from the Banana Project where 25,000 lbs. of bananas were distributed to local food pantries to the annual Relay for Life which has raised $295,000 since it started on campus in 2003. During the February blizzard that crippled the region, Holly organized a group of students to shovel snow from driveways and sidewalks for town residents. This spirit of volunteerism creates not only an important contribution today, but also prepares future civic leaders for the communities they will join after graduating from Shepherd.

In addition to our award winners, there are many out reach activities that serve the greater Shepherd community:

  • Nursing students volunteer each month in Martinsburg by providing blood glucose and blood pressure screening, pregnancy and HIV testing, and health education for low-income and homeless patients.

  • The men's basketball team worked with the Martinsburg Boys and Girls Club during the fall semester, helping children with homework and then playing basketball or officiating games in the center's gym.

  • Graphic design students used their skills to create a brochure promoting Shepherdstown businesses and restaurants in collaboration with the Shepherdstown Business Association.

  • Education and nursing students traveled to Jamaica for spring break to serve in hospitals and schools.

    When Carol Geary Schneider, president of the Association of American Colleges and Universities, spoke to Shepherd faculty and staff in February about liberal learning, she named four essential outcomes for students facing 21st-century challenges. The first two deal with knowledge of human cultures and the physical and natural world, and intellectual and practical skills, both learning outcomes generally provided in the classroom. But the latter two deal with personal and social responsibility and integrative and applied learning--the kind of civic engagement and service learning that not only wins Shepherd University recognition, but the kind of community outreach that we do so well every day.

     

  • Shepherd University | Office of the President | P.O. Box 5000 | Shepherdstown, West Virginia | 25443-5000
    304-876-5107 | 800-344-5231