MLK Day of Service

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Our nation celebrates Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday, a time in which we pause to honor a man who was a courageous leader for our country and an extraordinary servant for his fellow human beings.

It is important to remember that at Virginia Commonwealth University, our students share this mission. VCU’s unique educational experience gives students the extraordinary opportunity to take what they learn in the classroom, laboratory and studio and use it to help people in the community. And they are doing just that: Last year, VCU students contributed more than 723,000 hours of service to our region. Now, we have a stated goal of 1 million hours, and we are on our way.

Many of VCU’s 500 student organizations provide opportunities for students to engage in experiential learning centered on service and volunteerism. On Friday, Jan. 17, the Student Commons will host the Spring Student Organization and Volunteer Opportunities (SOVO) Fair, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. This is an excellent opportunity for students to learn about how they can become more engaged in their campus and their community.

I encourage students to visit the Volunteer Programs table at the fair and pledge to volunteer 30 hours to help us reach our million-hour goal. The first 1,000 students who make this pledge will receive a VCU Volunteers T-shirt.

The Million Hour Campaign website provides more information about how to take the pledge, where to volunteer and how to document your service.

Many thanks to our students for joining me in making this pledge to lead and serve our community.