Commitment to Service

December 01, 2015
by Jere W. Morehead, President

At the core of the University of Georgia’s mission is the commitment to service. During the holiday season, we are reminded of this priority. For UGA students, faculty, and staff, however, service is a year-round endeavor. In fact, this institution’s values of community engagement and extension permeate much of the teaching, research, and outreach activities performed by members of the University.

This institution’s commitment to service can be seen clearly through the work of the Office of Service-Learning, for example. This office works with UGA faculty to offer more than 400 service-learning courses in which students apply academic skills and knowledge to address a community need, issue, or problem. More than 8,000 students completed service-learning courses in the past year, providing an estimated 276,000 hours of service to improve lives and communities across the state.

Raising funds for charities is another way that UGA students invest their time and energy to help those in need. In all, UGA students raised more than $1 million for charities last year. One organization, ugaMiracle, has become one of the largest student-run philanthropies in the Southeast, raising nearly $700,000 last year to support Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

UGA students also serve others by participating in the University’s IMPACT program, which organizes weeklong service trips throughout the Southeast during the spring and winter breaks. Right now, a number of UGA students are preparing to spend winter break on service trips to address critical issues in the region such as homelessness and poverty.

As an institution with a land-grant mission, UGA has a longstanding commitment to service. During the holidays and throughout the year, I am proud to see the significant contributions the University community makes to the state of Georgia and beyond.