The St. Mary’s University community began the spring semester with a focus on service by contributing more than 2,600 hours of community service during the biannual Continuing the Heritage event.

With a theme of “Mission in Action” about 550 students, faculty and staff, and alumni spread out around the city to help out at 28 service sites for 14 agencies. Activities including planting gardens, cleaning and painting Head Start center playgrounds, painting homes for the elderly, spending time with children in shelters, and working on a build for Habitat for Humanity.

“Continuing the Heritage” is a unique St. Mary’s tradition in its 12th year. It is tied to the University’s Catholic and Marianist mission to “foster the formation of people in faith and educate leaders for the common good through community service, integrated liberal arts and professional education, and academic excellence.

Approximately 70 percent of St. Mary’s students participate in community service every year and historically volunteer nearly 150,000 service hours annually. The University has received The Carnegie Foundation’s Civic Engagement Classification, and was recently ranked first in the nation by Washington Monthly as a Master’s University that promotes community service, research and social mobility. St. Mary’s has also been recognized on the President of the United States’ Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for four years in a row.

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