Pomona College has been selected to the 2013 President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll by the Corporation for National and Community Service. The Honor Roll recognizes higher education institutions that "reflect the values of exemplary community service and achieve meaningful outcomes in their communities."
According to the award, Pomona College's "selection to the Honor Roll is recognition from the highest levels of the federal government of your commitment to service and civic engagement on your campus and in our nation."
The College's commitment to public service began early in its history and can be found on the College gates, "They only are loyal to this college who, departing bear their added riches for mankind." Today the centerpiece of the College's outreach programs is the Draper Center for Community Partnerships, which administers 10 programs and activities focused on educational outreach, community-based research and other initiatives to deepen community engagement.
During the 2011-12 year, more than 600 students participated in community service through the College, providing more than 20,000 hours of community service.
Among the programs for which Pomona College made the President's Honor Roll was the Pomona College Academy for Youth Success, a comprehensive college-access and academic skills building program. Held on Pomona's campus over four weeks in summer, PAYS is an intensive, residential program for 10th-12th grade high school students from ethnically diverse, low-income backgrounds. Since its beginning, 240 students have graduated from PAYS and been admitted to colleges and universities.
Also featured in the application were three other community service programs.
• Food Rescue diverts food prepared in the dining halls that would otherwise be wasted and delivers it to local shelters including Inland Valley Hope Partners and a local church. Established in 2009, Food Rescue delivered 15,000 meals last academic year.
• Alternabreak, which occurs during spring break, sent 43 students to community based non-profit organizations in Los Angeles, San Diego or San Francisco. At places ranging from the L.A. Ronald McDonald House and Heal the Bay to Father Joe's Villages, Project Open Hand and Golden Gate National Parks, where they volunteered 1,350 hours.
• Pomona College's outreach to local schools was also highlighted. Pomona hosted visits from more than 1,000 youth from local schools, with the goals of increasing awareness of the College and the liberal arts tradition and in turn increasing the number of first generation, low-income and historically underrepresented students in college.
The President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll was announced at the American Council of Education annual conference on March 4.
For more information on Draper Center programs, visit the Draper Center website.