Tech’s motto, “Progress and Service,” is proudly embodied by the many community service organizations on campus, one of which is the recently re-founded Community Service Council (CSC).
The volunteer project coordinating organization was originally founded at Tech in 2007 with a distinct purpose, but became re-founded in 2011 as an organization that exists to support other service groups on campus and to provide resources so that they can prosper in their outreach efforts both in the community and around the world.
Their main focus of CSC is to bring passion and tradition into the idea of community service at Tech.
Service organizations such as the committees of MOVE and For the Kids promote specific volunteering activities and programs, and the CSC seeks out ways to provide funds to these organizations and assists them in helping with their respective activities.
They also provide a Service Calendar where groups on campus can post their activities throughout the semester.
CSC conducts forums frequently throughout the semester, which help guide organizations on different aspects that they should focus on in order to build a stronger service leadership force. Some example of topics covered have included transition organization, transportation for organizations and fundraising.
“I am really encouraged by the positive response to community service at Tech,” said Emily Gooding, a fourth-year PTFE major who is the current Executive Committee Chair of the council. “I would like to see more emphasis on service reflection, and giving thought to the general population that we serve,” said Gooding of her hopes for the future of the council.
Some of the other current issues the council has been dealing with, according to Gooding, involves funding for transportation when organizations have to travel to activity sites. This has been a problem in recent semesters, and is an area that can greatly benefit from attention. In the long term, the leadership staff hopes to bring in more funds for specific service initiatives.
For spring initiatives, CSC recently hosted a Celebration of Service in February, where CSC and multiple other community service organizations set up booths on Tech Walkway and presented mini-service projects that students can easily do on their way to and from class.
Examples of the different activities included writing cards for breast cancer patients and notes for Tech bus drivers.
When students had completed all the activities, they could get CSC prizes, including t-shirts and cups. In past years, the event was composed of purely philanthropic organizations, but this year, expanded to include Greek organizations, honor societies and any organization with a service component.
The event also included an interactive service map where students could point out where in the world they served, and to serve as an inspiration to expand their horizons.
CSC also utilizes a variety of marketing outlets to promote all of these activities, which include Facebook, their new website, and the website of Leadership and Civic Engagement to let students know of upcoming programs and opportunities to serve.
The CSC recently had their deadline for students to submit applications to be considered for Cabinet positions during the 2013-2014 year. The Cabinet works to build a structure of support for service organizations.
According to Gooding, service efforts should not stop within the Tech campus.
“As a whole, we need to focus on reflecting who we are serving,” Gooding said.
She hopes to add a new element to CSC that would allow students to share their experiences and what they’ve learned from their volunteering projects, and be able to translate it to make the campus better.