Virginia Colleges Support Service

First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe welcomed college and university presidents across Virginia for a special celebration at the Governor’s mansion to thank them for their commitment to service years in higher education. The event recognized more than 50 higher education institutions, including all Virginia public colleges and community colleges, that have signed on to Virginia’s “Compact on National Service” — making Virginia the first state in the nation where the higher education community has come together to commit to integrating service years on their campuses.

Each of these institutions has committed to adopting at least one of the tactics outlined in Service Year Alliance’s “Service Year + Higher Education Engagement Opportunities Toolkit.” Commitments include creating service year opportunities for undergraduate or graduate students, linking service years to academic credit, and valuing and encouraging service years through admissions, financial aid, careers services, or designations on diplomas or graduation certificates.

“We are proud that the Commonwealth is leading the way by making a service year part of what it means to participate in higher education in Virginia,” said First Lady Dorothy McAuliffe, while addressing the college presidents. “We are honored to be the first state in the nation to become an Employer of National Service, and it’s no surprise that our first-rate educational institutions are continuing to lead by making a commitment to support service year opportunities.”

Mrs. McAuliffe was joined by Dr. Tiffany Franks of Averett University, Dr. Cheryl Thompson-Stacy of Lord Fairfax Community College, and Jonathan R. Alger of James Madison University — leaders at the forefront of this effort to embrace initiatives on their campuses and across Virginia that instill a service ethic in their cultures and support service year opportunities for their students.

Service Year Alliance is a bipartisan organization committed to making a year of full-time service — a service year — a common expectation and opportunity for young Americans of all backgrounds. For more information about Service Year Alliance’s efforts to engage higher education institutions around service year opportunities please visit or contact Dr. Jenna Dell:

Governor’s Press Release

See more photos from this event.

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