“Receiving this award on behalf of Lee University was a signal honor. It recognizes the transformative service engaged in by our students, faculty, staff, and community partners. This recognition will continue to inspire us to meet pressing needs in our community and around the world,” Hayes said.
Together with representatives from Ohio Wesleyan University, and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Hayes attended the award presentation Monday night in Radio City Music Hall as part of the CNCS’s National Conference.
The 2010 National Conference was a three-day event attracting more than 5,000 service leaders for dialogue and action in order to better meet social needs through service and volunteering. Convened by Points of Light Institute and the Corporation for National and Community Service, the conference highlighted ways the service movement can target resources, measure impact, expand opportunities for people to serve, build capacity and embrace innovation.
The award was presented at the “Here’s To You!” inspiration event held June 28, at Radio City Music Hall. The Daily Show’s John Oliver hosted the spectacular evening event, and Broadway casts from West Side Story, In The Heights and Million Dollar Quartet performed during the evening.
Awards such as Corporation for National and Community Service’s Spirit of Service award and the President’s Honor Roll were presented by special guests, including actress and poet Ruby Dee, Jeff Parness, founder of The New York Says Thank You Foundation, Global Health Corps President Barbara Bush, Top Chef finalist Carla Hall and OCEAN’s host and activist Philippe Cousteau.
In late February, the CNCS announced the six colleges and universities who were named as Presidential Awardees in the 2009 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The schools were Lee University, Ohio Wesleyan University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Emory & Henry College (VA), Raritan Valley Community College (NJ) and Willamette University (OR). This is the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service-learning, and civic engagement.
The Honor Roll is a list compiled each year of schools nationwide, generally recognizing each college or university for its students’ service efforts. The 2009 Honor Roll included over 700 schools. For exceptional efforts, the Honor Roll includes a list “with distinction” including fewer than one hundred schools. Lee University has been on the Honor Roll with distinction since the list’s inception in 2006.
This year, however, is the first time any Tennessee campus has been one of the six Presidential Award winners.
The six 2009 Presidential recipients were honored in two categories: general community service, which considers the scope and quality of an institution’s community service, service-learning, and civic engagement programs; and service to youth from disadvantaged circumstances. Three were named as Presidential Awardees in each category. Lee was a Presidential Awardee in the General Community Service category.
According to information released by CNCS about the Honor Roll, in 2009, “Lee students completed more than 60,000 hours of volunteer service last year, in projects aimed at poverty relief, food collection and distribution, and helping students with autism and other developmental disabilities.
The Corporation for National and Community Service is a federal agency that engages more than five million Americans in service through its Senior Corps, AmeriCorps, and Learn and Serve America programs, and leads President Obama’s national call to service initiative, United We Serve. For more information, visit NationalService.gov.