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WesternU honored for community service

by Rodney Tanaka

February 15, 2008

Read 3 mins

Western University of Health Sciences has earned national recognition for its commitment to community service.

The Corporation for National and Community Service named WesternU to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for exemplary service efforts and service to disadvantaged youth.

“As a university of the health professions, we recognize that the ultimate purpose of all of our work is to prepare healers for communities all over the country,” said WesternU President Philip Pumerantz. “All of our graduates will be improving the quality of life of thousands of people. In order to have a comprehensive and quality education program, it is important for the university to have a strong commitment in the communities it will serve. That is why we encourage students and faculty to be active participants in service activities. Being on the Honor Roll validates the philosophy we embrace and the direction we have taken.”

Launched in 2006, the Community Service Honor Roll is the highest federal recognition a school can achieve for its commitment to service-learning and civic engagement. Honorees for the award were chosen based on a series of selection factors including scope and innovativeness of service projects, percentage of student participation in service activities, incentives for service, and the extent to which the school offers academic service-learning courses.

The Honor Roll is jointly sponsored by the Corporation for National and Community Service and the Department of Education, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, USA Freedom Corps, Campus Compact and the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation.

“There is no question that the universities and colleges who have made an effort to participate and win the Honor Roll award are themselves being rewarded,” American Council on Education President David Ward said in a written statement. “Earning this distinction is not easy. But now each of these schools will be able to wear this award like a badge of honor.”

The honor roll includes 528 schools, said Siobhan Dugan, public affairs specialist for the Corporation for National and Community Service, a federal agency that improves lives, strengthens communities and fosters civic engagement through service and volunteering. The corporation administers Senior Corps, AmeriCorps and Learn and Serve America programs.

“One of the roles of the university is to prepare its students for the future,” she said. “Stressing community service and civic engagement for students is important to achieving a college or university’s mission.”

Research shows that people who volunteer when they’re young tend to do that throughout their lives, Dugan said.

WesternU’s Honor Roll application highlights many programs that bring students into direct contact with the community. The Pomona Community Health Action Team (PCHAT) holds free health and education fairs.

About 125 students volunteer each year for Santa’s Workshop, which provides food, activities and gifts to children through the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services.

The Pomona Health Outreach Project (PHOP) and the Student Chapter of the American Association of Shelter Veterinarians provide diabetes, blood pressure and obesity testing for the homeless and bi-monthly wellness checkups for animals of the homeless.

“College students are tackling the toughest problems in America, demonstrating their compassion, commitment and creativity by serving as mentors, tutors, health workers and even engineers,” Liz Seale, chief operating officer of the Corporation for National and Community Service, said in a written statement. “They represent a renewed spirit of civic engagement fostered by outstanding leadership on caring campuses.”

For more information about the Honor Roll, visit the Web site


Honor Roll (California schools)

Antioch University Los Angeles

Bakersfield College

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

CSU Long Beach

CSU Stanislaus

CSU San Bernardino

CSU San Marcos

Concordia University

MiraCosta College

San Jose State University

Santa Clara University

UC Davis


University of San Diego

University of the Pacific

Western University of Health Sciences




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