New Service Distinction Leadership Program Launched - Christopher Newport University


New Service Distinction Leadership Program Launched

Students now have enhanced opportunity to make a meaningful impact in the community through new program and course.

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The Center for Community Engagement (CCE) has announced the addition of a new component to the university’s Service Distinction Program, which recognizes students for completing a minimum of 140 hours of service in the community. Students can now attain the status of Service Distinction Leader with the completion of 400 or more hours.

The program allows students to go beyond one-time volunteering activities, while gaining valuable, real-world, marketable skills and experience, according to CCE Director Brad Brewer. “CNU students are passionate about helping others, and it is important to provide a developmental pathway for them to exercise that passion and make a positive impact,” he says. Participants also develop skills related to policy development, program planning, and advocacy, as well as establishing a deeper understanding of societal issues and root causes.

Additionally, CNU has developed a companion course called CNU Engage 101 that will aid students in learning how to more effectively serve their communities. Through the course, future Service Distinction Leaders will complete training on best practices of community engagement, while becoming liaisons and leaders for various local constituencies and coordinating with other volunteers to accomplish goals. The first training sessions will begin in the 2018-19 academic year.

Katlyn Logsdon ’19, a biochemistry major and leadership studies minor, plans to undertake the new challenge. “I think the Service Distinction Leadership Program is wonderful,” she says. “Because the program encourages serving the majority of the 400 hours at one site, it will foster relationships, dedication, responsibility and overall morale. That service stands out on resumes which opens doors in life after graduation.”

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