RIT Selected to Participate in AmeriCorps’ Students in Service Program

Initiative allows students to develop civic engagement skills in Rochester region

Christina Karas, a multidisciplinary studies graduate student, surveys Rochester community members as part of RIT’s University Community Partnership. The partnership has been selected to participate in AmeriCorps’ Students in Service pilot initiative, which develops civic skills among students and increases connections between colleges and universities and the local community. RIT was one of only four universities in New York selected to participate.

Rochester Institute of Technology will offer students the opportunity to gain hands-on experience, taking what they’ve learned in the classroom and applying it to community work through AmeriCorps’ Students in Service pilot program.

The university has been selected as one of only four New York universities to participate in the initiative. It is designed to challenge students to develop civic skills and increase connections between colleges and universities and the local community. The pilot is being coordinated through the New York Campus Compact, a coalition of universities that seeks to promote active citizenship among its students.

“RIT is committed to enhancing community engagement throughout our student body and we are honored to be included in this important pilot program,” notes Ann Howard, senior associate dean in the College of Liberal Arts and director of RIT’s University Community Partnership Program. “It is our hope this effort will further assist local organizations in accomplishing their mission and provide the metrics and positive results needed to expand this program nationally.”

Through Students in Service, 25 RIT students will have the opportunity to join the AmeriCorps program part-time and work in the community on a wide variety of development initiatives including public education, environmental stewardship, and strengthening neighborhoods. Students who complete the program will receive a $1,132 educational scholarship. Interested individuals can contact Jane Amstey at 475-2656 or jragla@rit.edu.

AmeriCorps, founded in 1993, is a U.S. government program designed to provide recent graduates and volunteers with service opportunities that benefit American communities, similar to the Peace Corps’ efforts in foreign nations. The program is funded through the Corporation for National and Community Service.

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