Community service tops 16,000 hours in honor of Homecoming
10/25/2007 -

Photo of art students Jennie Hugo and Stephanie Crane painting a mural at a community center.
Above: Jennie Hugo (front), a sophomore from Jacksonville, Fla., and Stephanie Crane, a sophomore from Cullowhee, paint a mural at a community center.

Western Carolina University community members completed more than 16,000 hours of community service between Sept. 20 and Oct. 20  well exceeding this year's 10,000-hour goal for Homecoming.

The Homecoming committee at WCU expanded the traditional day of service this year to the month before the Homecoming football game and invited students, alumni, faculty and staff to participate.

“This community service initiative galvanized the WCU community into concerted action for the benefit of our communities,” said Glenn Bowen, director of service learning.

Students participated in service projects, including running a marching band clinic in Asheville and hosting a high school band competition. Art students painted murals and taught classes at sites, including the Pigeon Creek Community Center, a Girl Scout Camp, nursing home and high school.

Sigma Chi fraternity members dug a trench for a water line to assist Appalachian Homestead Farm and Preserve. Students in a broadcast communication course created public service announcements for Pathways for the Future, a nonprofit organization that serves people with disabilities, and members of the Lady Catamount basketball team went to Jonathan Valley Elementary School in Waynesville to participate in a winter reading program and conduct recreational activities.

Staff members participated in service such as helping manage a yard sale to benefit a cancer patient, working as an interpreter for patients at the Good Samaritan Clinic of Jackson County, and helping lay foundation and flooring for a house through Habitat for Humanity of Jackson County.

On campus, volunteers with the Clothesline Project organized by the Women’s Center raised awareness of the issue of violence against women. A student conservation awareness team worked with trash disposal. Others participated in an American Red Cross Blood Drive and volunteered at WCU’s Mountain Heritage Day.

Additional community service hours reported involved coaching youth sports, serving meals and assisting with grant writing.

For information on the Center for Service Learning, contact Glenn Bowen at (828) 227-7184 or

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Last modified: Thursday, Oct. 25, 2007


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