More than 200 West Virginia University students will continue to showcase the University’s commitment to serving the Morgantown community on Saturday (Oct. 24) when they join millions of volunteers across the country participating in national Make a Difference Day.

“When students take part in service projects, they are not only building connections to their communities, but they are also helping WVU to fulfill its land-grant mission,” said Sue Day-Perroots, associate provost of undergraduate education. “The opportunities available this Saturday are fun and accessible ways students can make an impact.”

The projects are sponsored by the Center for Service and Learning. WVU’s Student Government Association is also working closely with the sponsors to ensure WVU students can easily participate.

Volunteers can choose from a range of projects that benefit local families and social-service organizations. Projects support Homeward Bound, the Morgantown Public Library and WVU’s campuses, among others. All projects will be student-led, in partnership with Morgantown residents and community leaders.

Highlighting the campus-wide spirit of involvement will be many groups and initiatives. Respectful Mountaineer’s leadership team plans to participate and encourages all students to join them. There also will be some projects that build upon themes from WVU’s Common Read World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War.

Students will meet at 10 a.m. on the Mountainlair green. At that time, students can learn about all the project options available as well as choose their project for the day, if they have not already signed up.

“We want to foster a culture of service on campus,” said Andrew Sutherland, the director of community service for the Student Government Association. “We want students to realize that service isn’t just something you do; we want to make it a WVU tradition.”

The University is solidifying that tradition through a new Big 12 Service Initiative featuring 12 large University-wide community service events throughout the academic year. Make a Difference Day is one of those events and is part of that larger mission to make service a priority at WVU. All service hours completed Saturday will count toward WVU’s Million Hour Match.

The Center for Service and Learning will be coordinating all the various projects taking place Saturday through iServe, WVU’s online service management tool. To learn more and to sign up for a project, visit WVU’s Make a Difference Day page. Be sure to share your experience via Twitter and Instagram with the hashtags #WVUengage and #MDDay.

With a mission to inspire the nation to make a difference through service projects large and small, Make a Difference Day is the largest national day of community service. It is a USA Today initiative, backed by the Gannett Company and TEGNA, Inc. The initiative is possible through collaboration with partner organizations Points of Light and Newman’s Own.



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