show high rate of volunteerism
Ida Lee Wootten
teachers demonstrate a deep commitment to helping others, a new
U.Va. poll shows.
In the first survey of volunteer service provided by students
in the Curry School
of Education, respondents indicated significant involvement
in community activities. The 218 survey participants indicated
that they contributed a total of 28,594 hours of community service
over 10 months, from January through November 1999. The average
number of hours of volunteer service reported by each student
over the period was more than 100 hours.
The most popular areas of service included volunteering as coaches
for such area youth teams as soccer, volleyball and baseball;
serving as camp counselors; tutoring children and adults; engaging
in church or synagogue activities; and participating in programs
run through Madison House, the office that coordinates student
volunteerism at U.Va. They also worked in medical settings, including
hospitals, nursing homes, rescue squads and crisis centers.
"These volunteer hours are over and above the many hours
each week education students spend in the local schools as part
of their teacher-preparation program," said Sandra B. Cohen,
director of teacher education in the Curry School, who undertook
the survey as part of a pilot program exploring a new accreditation
method in teacher-education programs.
Those surveyed include traditionally aged students who are in
the Curry School's five-year program that leads to the simultaneous
awarding of both bachelor's and master's degrees. Also surveyed
were older students in the two-year Master of Teaching program,
a full-time program for those who hold bachelor's degrees but
who have no education background. Nearly 84 percent of the students
graduating in 2000 responded to the survey, which was administered
year about 3,000 U.Va. students contribute approximately 110,000
hours of service through the independent, non-profit organization,
Madison House, its executive director, Cindy Fredrick, noted.
"This survey continues to highlight the high level of commitment
U.Va. students have to service in our community," she said.
In recognition of the new information about the extent of outreach
performed by Curry School students, Cohen has nominated those
who have contributed 100 or more hours of service for the Presidential
Student Service Challenge Award. Bestowed by the White House,
the award recognizes students who demonstrate extraordinary service
in a year.