"To be a KSU Owl is to Serve."

To learn more about the many ways YOU can make a difference in your community, be sure to:

With numerous understandings, and in many cases interchangeable uses of the terms "volunteerism" and "service," it is important to distinguish between these terms and their definitions.  The Office of Volunteerism and Service-Learning Support utilizes the following definitions to inform our practice:

Volunteerism: “The engagement of students in activities where the primary emphasis is on the service being provided and the primary intended beneficiary is clearly the service recipient” (Campus Compact, 2003).

Civic engagement: “Individual and collective actions designed to identify and address issues of public concern. Civic engagement can take many forms, from individual voluntarism to organizational involvement to electoral participation. It can include efforts to directly address an issue, work with others in a community to solve a problem or interact with the institutions of representative democracy. Civic engagement encompasses a range of specific activities such as working in a soup kitchen, serving on a neighborhood association, writing a letter to an elected official or voting” (Definition of Civic Engagement, 2009).

Community service: “Action taken to meet the needs of others and to better the community as a whole” (Campus Compact, 1998).

Philanthropy/fundraising: “The effort or inclination to increase the well-being of humankind, as by charitable aid or donations” (Philanthropy, 2000).

Service-learning: "A credit-bearing, educational experience in which students (a) participate in an organized service activity that meets identified community needs and (b) reflect on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of civic responsibility" (Bringle & Hatcher, 1995).

Intensive service-learning experiences. "Service-learning experiences that immerse students intensively in a setting or culture, whether domestically or abroad. These experiences may engage students in dialogue and problem solving with the people most affected by the issues and help them develop a sense of solidarity with people whose lives and perspectives differ from their own. These experiences vary in length from a one-week alternative break to a semester- or year-long experience" (CAS-Civic Engagement and Service-Learning Programs, 2015).