October 11, 2010

Service is at the Heart of a SLU Education

Values-Centered Academics, Jesuit Commitment to Serving Others has earned University National Honors


Make a Difference Day 2009
Students volunteer at a local elementary during the 2009 Make a Difference Day.

Saint Louis University's commitment to service has never been stronger.

Last year, students, faculty and staff completed more than 1 million service hours — the most in University history.

Students led the way, tutoring at local churches, cleaning nearby neighborhoods and giving up their spring break vacations for service trips.

And on Saturday, Oct. 23, a record 2,735 people have signed up to volunteer for SLU's participation in Make a Difference Day, the national day of service. This will mark the 13th year SLU has participated.

At SLU, however, service goes far beyond volunteering — it's at the heart of the University's Catholic, Jesuit education. For example, more than 80 of the University's courses directly integrate community service into academic content.

"The entire SLU experience transforms learners into leaders, volunteers into advocates, and idealists into agents for real and lasting change," said University President Lawrence Biondi, S.J.

SLU professors — known for personalized teaching and top-notch research — are very engaged in service as well. They regularly use their expertise and training to help others.

This commitment to service has earned SLU national honors. This year, the University made the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for the third-consecutive time. The Templeton Foundation also has named the University a character-building college.

Related Links


Campus Kitchen: SLU was the first site in the country for this national program that targets hunger in local communities.

Casa de Salud: Powered by SLU volunteers, this new wellness clinic provides health services to the region's Hispanic community. 

Doerr Center for Social Justice Education and Research: The center provides scholarships and research grants to address social justice issues in the community.

Give Kids a Smile: Hosted by SLU's Center for Advanced Dental Education, the two-day clinic provides free dental care for children in need.

Health Resource Center: SLUCare doctors and medical school students treat at-risk patients.

Legal Clinics: Law school professors and students help the elderly, abused children, veterans and others.

Make a Difference Day: SLU has participated in this national day of service for 12 years.

Micah House:
Students live and learn together in this faith-based program that seeks long-term solutions to the problems of the urban poor.

Open Doors: During this one-day event, SLU offers homeless individuals a hot meal, clothing, health screenings, job counseling and other vital services.

Pack'em Back to School: This program provides new clothing, shoes and school supplies to local students in need. 

Reinert Clinics for Family and Child Development: The clinics provide affordable counseling, outreach and prevention services.

Relay for Life: SLU has participated for seven years, raising more than $1 million for the American Cancer Society.

Service Leadership: This certificate program in the John Cook School of Business requires, among other things, the completion of 300 hours of community service.

Higher purpose. Greater good.
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