Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 68.74
Liaison Kathleen Crawford
Submission Date July 28, 2014
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Florida Gulf Coast University
EN-12: Community Service

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.46 / 5.00 Jessica Rhea
Dir Comm Engage & Svc Learning
Service Learning
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Number of students engaged in community service:

Total number of students :

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 of this credit (community service hours)?:

Total number of student community service hours contributed during a one-year period:

Does the institution include community service achievements on student transcripts?:

A brief description of the practice of including community service on transcripts, if applicable:

One of the defining characteristics of Florida Gulf Coast University is its institutional commitment to service, put into practice through the civic engagement activities of faculty, staff and students. Service-learning connects students to the community and the classroom to the real world. Through service-learning students are both learners and teachers, sharing themselves and their knowledge and, in turn, learning from the clients and the environment where they serve. Because service-learning is such a powerful teaching tool and because service-learning sets the stage for continued community involvement, University founders established service-learning as an undergraduate requirement. We call our service-learning program EaglesConnect. http://www.fgcu.edu/connect/

Students admitted to FGCU as first-year students or lower level transfers must complete 80 hours of service-learning as part of their graduation requirement. Students admitted as upper-level transfers must complete 40 hours of service-learning as part of their graduation requirement.

Students who have already completed a bachelor’s degree at another institution and are admitted to FGCU to complete a second undergraduate degree must complete 40 hours of service-learning as part of their second degree’s graduation requirements. Students who have completed a bachelor’s degree at FGCU and are re-admitted to FGCU to complete a second undergraduate degree have already fulfilled the degree requirements for service-learning; however, if they register for a class that has a service-learning requirement, they are obligated to complete it as a component of the course’s requirements.

Agreement and Verification forms are used to document service-learning hours. The FGCU student transcripts show the total of service hours students have completed until they’ve reached their 40 or 80 hour requirement. Then it is listed on the transcript as COMPLETED.

Recognition is also given to students who complete over 400 hours and demonstrate a commitment to an agency/issue for the Excellence and Civic Engagement Award. (http://www.fgcu.edu/Connect/9810.asp)

Does the institution provide incentives for employees to participate in community service (on- or off-campus)?:

A brief description of the institution’s employee community service initiatives:

The FGCU Staff Advisory Panel partnered with Tree Campus USA to host the first Annual Campus Beautification Day. The event was held celebrating Florida Arbor Day and brought attention to the FGCU Tree Orphanage, an area created from trees saved and relocated from construction sites across campus. The joint effort involved bringing together staff, faculty and students working toward the common goal of beautifying an area of campus.

On January 25, 2014 behind Griffin Hall and Merwin Hall approximately 30 participants contributed over 120 hours of service for this event. Here are some of the highlights of the day:
-Volunteers planted 325 native species to enhance the walkway behind Merwin Hall from Edwards Hall to Griffin Hall. The Florida Department of Forestry donated 50 plants toward the project with Physical Plant providing the remainder. The following native species were included: Firebush, Coontie, Beauty Berry, Wild coffee, Milkweed, Dune Sunflower, Walter’s Vibernum, Yellow Lantana, Simpsons Stopper, Tampa Verbain, Mahogany Trees
-The Colloquium Coordinator provided student naturalists as team leaders and educators so participants could learn about the natural environment on campus, the naturalists also shared information about the semi-annual nature trail cleanups and other opportunities to enjoy the campus ecosystem.
-Physical Plant provided logistical support, and is the main contact for Tree Campus USA activities on campus, hosting many campus tree plantings since 2009. Because the volunteers were such excellent workers, the plantings went quickly leaving time to add plenty of mulch and to pick up litter throughout the surrounding area as well. The hope is to garner some donations for tables and benches to create more seating to enjoy the beautiful shaded area.

Make a Difference Day took place on Oct, 26th 2013 at FGCU's Soccer Field. FGCU and Wells Fargo provided 900 hours of services Saturday to eight area not-for-profit organizations. Some 200 students, 75 Wells Fargo team members, 25 FGCU alumni and 25 faculty and staff members volunteered across the region for the second annual event hosted by the FGCU Foundation, Alumni Association and Center for Civic Engagement and Service Learning. (http://www.fgcu.edu/CRM/makeadifferenceday2013.html).
Here is an overview of some of the work accomplished on campus that day:
-5 designated planting sites were beautified with over 12 different native species including Cocoplum, Green Buttonwood, Firebush, Bald Cypress, Slash Pine, Red Maple, Leather Fern, String/Swamp Lily, Blue Flag Iris, Pickerel Weed, Florida Gamagrass, Pitch Apple, and Laurel Oak
-Over 240 native items were planted
-Over 35 trees and/or bushes were named
-Participants had the opportunity to plant a tray of herbs. (Basil, chives, cilantro, dill and parsley).

On April 15, 2014 in the area spanning from the Library Lawn Lake to Sovi Lake, approximately 25 students and 5 faculty and staff contributed over 60 hours of service. Some event highlights are as follows:
-Removal of trees from Library Lake and replant them at Sovi Lake for the areas affected by the Library Lawn construction in the summer months.
-3 native species were transplanted:(30 small cypress trees, 5 water lilies, and 10 clusters of alligator flags).

Incentives for employees to participate in community service:
The FGCU Faculty Senate gives recognition to outstanding faculty service for both teams and individuals. The criteria for the award are:

-Completion of one full academic year at FGCU in a faculty position
-Demonstrates continuous growth in service over time, with representative amount of service occurring while serving as a faculty member at FGCU
-Demonstrates a self-critical, reflective approach in evaluating his/her professional growth and development over time in the area of service
-Demonstrates support of the service mission of FGCU
-Demonstrates mentoring of peers in service and civic engagement (e.g., one-on-one mentoring or in-services to other professionals)

Demonstrates excellence in one of the three criteria:
o Demonstrates substantial evidence of continuing service to the applicant's professional, discipline-related organizations at the university, regional, state, and/or national level(s).
o Demonstrates substantial evidence of continuing service to student organizations and/or
o Demonstrates substantial evidence of service to the community, region, state, and/or
nation in the nominee's role as an educator. (e.g. faculty integration of service learning
into courses)

The website URL where information about the institution’s community service initiatives is available:

This information is from the 2013-14 year

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.