The Center for Civic Engagement was created to promote and coordinate volunteer opportunities, build partnerships within the community and prepare students to be engaged citizens. Oglethorpe’s Center for Civic Engagement staff collaborate with faculty and administrators to promote and coordinate opportunities for students which integrate, enhance and apply theories taught in OU classrooms to practical experiences via service-learning courses, internships, community service and volunteer placements in the City of Atlanta. Oglethorpe students, faculty and staff actively volunteer in the community because we have a responsibility to improve and enhance conditions in our community; it affirms the expectation of service held by the Petrel Point system, and helps us encourage sensitivity, compassion and responsiveness to people who lead different lives than our own. Our volunteer experiences direct students to realities and issues outside of the Oglethorpe University gates. Leadership and learning through community service are essential components of Oglethorpe’s mission as expressed by our tagline, “Make a life. Make a living. Make a difference.”
Key Focus Areas & Partnerships
- Education: Charles R. Drew Charter School, PATH Academy, Books For Africa
Blue Heron Nature Preserve, Oglethorpe University-Brookhaven Community Garden, Park Pride, TREES Atlanta
- Health and Wellness:
American Red Cross, MedShare, Senior Connections
- Homelessness and Hunger:
Atlanta Community Food Bank, Atlanta Union Mission, Habitat for Humanity, Hosea Feed the Hungry and Homeless, Suthers Center for Christian Outreach, Open Hand
Four Annual Days of Service
Orientation Day of Service during Freshman Orientation in August (SATURDAY, AUGUST 18, 2012)
During 2012's Orientation Day of Service, more than 350 students in the class of 2016 volunteered with staff, faculty, and community members at one of nine different nonprofit organizations including Grant Park Conservancy (above right), Books For Africa, Park Pride, TREES Atlanta, Atlanta Furniture Bank, Senior Citizen Services, Atlanta Community Food Bank, Southwest Atlanta Grower's Cooperative (SWAG), and Crop Mob Atlanta in the OU-Brookhaven Community Garden.
Atlanta Day of Service in October (SATURDAY, OCTOBER 20, 2012)
During last year's Atlanta Day of Service, nearly 100 students, parents, faculty and staff members volunteered at Sunrise Assisted Living (above left), Blue Heron Nature Preserve (above right), Lynwood Park Recreation Center, Suthers Center for Christian Outreach, and Open Hand.
MLK Day of Service in January (MONDAY, JANUARY 21, 2013)
January 16, 2012 brought more than 100 volunteers to serve at Atlanta Union Mission (above left), MedShare, and two St. Vincent de Paul Thrift Stores (above right). Athletic teams were a huge support including the Men’s Soccer and Lacrosse teams and the Men and Women’s track teams. Oglethorpe President Larry Schall also joined volunteers at MedShare and sorted through 2,476 pounds of supplies to prepare 227 boxes to go overseas.
OU Day of Service in April (FRIDAY, APRIL 5, 2013)
13, 2012, nearly 100 OU students, staff, and faculty members volunteered with Drew Charter School (above left), Park Pride, Senior Connections, MedShare, Blue Heron Nature Preserve, and the Rich Foundation Urban Leadership Program Homeless Outreach in Downtown Atlanta (above right).
If you cannot participate in any of Oglethorpe's Annual Days of Service, there are still ways to get involved. Ongoing opportunities with the Center include regularly volunteering with middle school students at PATH Academy, working in the OU-Brookhaven Community Garden, participating in a Civic Engagement Dialogue, sorting food items at the Atlanta Community Food Bank, becoming more involved with COEXIST Oglethorpe, and numerous other opportunities to collaborate with our community and education partners.
Are you interested in exploring a new city while learning more about an important social issue? Then, make sure to consider applying for this year's Alternative Winter and Spring Break trips. The Center staff coordinates these week-long breaks which offer fun, affordable service trips during University holidays.
The Center staff coordinate Oglethorpe's OUr Atlanta program, familiarizing first-year students with the world-class businesses and nonprofit organizations that call Atlanta home.
If interested in learning more about any of these opportunities, please contact Alicia Morris.