NMU receives national honor for community engagement by students

MARQUETTE — Northern Michigan University is receiving national recognition for the job its students do of getting engaged in the surrounding community.

NMU has received the 2015 Community Engagement Classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

Schools receiving the honor are classified in one of three ways: curricular engagement, outreach and partnerships, or a combination of both areas. NMU received the maximum recognition by qualifying for the combination category.

“We have two nationally-recognized programs, so we’re really proud of that,” NMU Center for Student Enrichment director Rachel Harris said. “One is the Student Leader Fellowship Program, and we complete about 5,000 hours of service to the community with that program each year. Well, more than that, but that’s just the second year when they do their internships!”

The other is the Superior Edge program, in which about a third of all NMU students go out into the community to make a difference through volunteer activities.

“Our office, the Center for Student Enrichment, works with academic service learning,” said. “We help and assist faculty to get connected with the community organizations, so students will take classes where they’re learning course content, and then they’re putting that into practice in the community.”

NMU is one of about 240 colleges and universities to receive the Carnegie Foundation distinction.