What is the President’s Volunteer Service Award?
Mount Wachusett Community College’s Center for Civic Learning & Community Engagement is a “certifying organization” for the Presidential Volunteer Service Award (PVSA). The PVSA was created to recognize and honor Americans who are engaged in their communities by way of voluntary service. It is awarded by the President of the United States and the President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation to individuals, families, and groups that are committed to community service.
What is the benefit of earning the Presidential Volunteer Service Award?
The Presidential Volunteer Service Award is a prestigious national honor that highlights your commitment to serving the community and the nation. This award not only improves your resume (for college transfers and future job applications) but also allows you to inspire others to follow in your footsteps – to contribute to their communities through volunteer service and to make volunteer service a central part of their lives.
To qualify for this award through MWCC:
All applicants must be currently enrolled MWCC students (or students who graduated within the PVSA qualifying year) and United States citizens or lawfully admitted permanent residents of the United States. You will need to supply evidence in person of your status at the Brewer Center.
How do I earn a President’s Volunteer Service Award?
To earn an Award, you must report your service hours via GivePulse, the online service for tracking all service learning and volunteerism at MWCC. Only MWCC-sponsored service activities count toward the PVSA. Other restrictions might apply, as required by PVSA standards.
If you have volunteered outside MWCC, we suggest you connect with another certifying organization. Other certifying organizations can be found at www.presidentialserviceawards.gov.
- Have documented at least 100 hours of volunteer service completed between a 12-month (1 year) academic year of July 1– June 30. MWCC-sponsored service hours include the following:
- On-campus organization activities (i.e. club meetings, planning, working events, community service projects, etc.)
- MWCC-sponsored service opportunities such as Alternative Spring Break and other days of service.
- Service learning, optional or required, within a MWCC course
- Submit proof of hours completed, verified by site supervisor(s) and/or faculty via GivePulse
- Complete the President’s Volunteer Award Application and an essay reflecting on how your experience impacted you and the community
- Be a U.S. Citizen or a permanent resident of the United States. You will need to provide one of the following:
- An original United States Birth Certificate
- A valid United States Passport
- A valid Legal Permanent Resident Card
What does NOT count toward a PVSA certified by MWCC?
- Service that is not affiliated with MWCC
- Paid service of any kind, including paid co-ops, paid internships and service affiliated with programs such as AmeriCorps and Commonwealth Corps (AmeriCorps participants are allowed to apply the hours served during their stipend year towards the Lifetime Achievement Award following your active year)
- Travel to and from service sites
- Hours required to complete an internship for a class. For example, if the internship is required as coursework and the reward is a grade, then this is not eligible to count toward the PVSA. If a student continues to serve beyond the internship requirement, then those hours will count.
- Service outside of the United States and its territories
- Court-ordered community service
Is there a reporting deadline?
The award is given for 100+ hours of service in one academic year. To qualify for the 2016-2017 academic year, all of your hours must be documented and approved by June 30, 2017. You may document hours of service undertaken between July 1, 2015 and June 30, 2016.
What do I receive?
There are different levels of recognition based on the number of hours of service reported. All recipients who have served over 100 approved hours receive a personalized certificate of achievement and a congratulatory letter from the President of the United States.
How do I receive my Award?
Once eligibility has been determined, the PVSA certificate and letter will be mailed to the address you have on file with the MWCC Student Records Office. You should expect to receive the Award sometime over the summer.