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history

Background

The University of Maryland had placed students in volunteer positions in the community prior to 1977-78, but no coordinated effort had been undertaken to attract people of the community to the campus as volunteers. Some departments and programs had received assistance from the Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), and a few individuals with prior affiliations with the university were offering their services. This demonstrated that the concept of involving retired people as volunteers could be successful.

In 1977, the Dean for Undergraduate Studies recognized that many retired people from careers in business, the government, and education continue to live in the College Park area after retirement and that their skills would be valuable to the university students. At the same time, it was believed that the campus offers an environment

 

writing center volunteer

Writing Center
Volunteer

that fosters new and continuing outlets for personal development for people of all ages and that our students benefit from the rich resources of a multi-generational community.

The Dean's office, in conjunction with the Center on Aging, approached the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation to fund a project that would tap the resources of the retirement community. The foundation has a reputation for innovative programming that involves older people in education and in August 1977 the foundation agreed to support a three-year effort to develop and implement this unique program.

In 1997, SVSC became a unit of Conferences and Visitor Services within the Division of Student Affairs. Today, the Senior Volunteer Service Corps is thriving and its members provide invaluable services to many departments, programs and offices around the campus.






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