Mar 07, 2013
For the sixth time in seven years, Humboldt State University has received national honors for community engagement and environmental and social responsibility.
The campus has been named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for its contributions to Redwood Coast sustainability, food security and social and environmental responsibility.
The annual Presidential award credits 1,885 HSU students for contributing more than 70,752 hours of volunteer work in the academic year 2011/2012. They teamed with 110-plus community partners, including 35 local school districts.
Students served on behalf of numerous campus agencies and programs, including the Campus Center for Appropriate Technology, Center for Service Learning and Academic Internships (‘Halting Hunger’ activities), Schatz Energy Research Center, Renewable Energy Student Union and the Office of Sustainability.
Others included the 18th annual HSU Day of Caring, which engaged 400 students and 59 community members in environmental clean-up and social service; and Y.E.S. (Youth Educational Services), the student-led collective of 16 volunteer programs that last year enlisted 430 students as tutors and mentors for at-risk youth and environmental educators in local K-12 schools.
Students taking part in the Y.E.S. Alternative Spring Break helped to curb hunger in local and San Francisco communities, feeding more than 3,000 people.
HSU students won California State University’s Energy Efficiency/Sustainability Award for waste diversion and Environmental Planning majors crafted a 10-year, parks and recreation master plan for Arcata. For the third year running, the Arcata campus was named among the most environmentally responsible colleges in the U.S. and Canada by the Princeton Review.
Overseas, HSU’s Dominicana program sent 14 students last year to build a new classroom made of recycled materials and a potable rainwater catchment in two barrios in the Dominican Republic’s capital, Santo Domingo.
“Humboldt State has been credited with this national recognition every year but one since 2007,” says Annie Bolick-Floss, director of the Center for Service Learning and Academic Internships. “This is an honor campus-wide because more than 100 HSU courses per semester center on environmental and sustainability subjects. Across all academic disciplines, close to a thousand students were involved last year in 35 formal Service Learning courses alone. And those figures do not include teacher preparation, social work and clinical placements and applied learning experiences outside the classroom. The most important champions of sustainability and social responsibility at Humboldt State are the students themselves.”