Our students strive to not only better themselves, but to improve the world around them. At UMass Dartmouth, they realize they can be the change.
“During my first weekend at UMassD, I harvested produce for local food pantries with 300 other students at the annual 9/11 Day of Service,” said Narcisse Kunda ’22. “The next day, I went to the Leduc Center to get more involved. Now, I help organize initiatives that address food insecurity and environmental issues on campus and in the community.”
Students like Kunda are motivated to make a difference on and off campus through the Robert and Jeanne Leduc Center for Civic Engagement. Established in 2008 by Robert ’78, Hon. '14 and Jeanne Leduc, the center integrates service and civic engagement into the academic experience. New perspectives discovered through engaged learning, active citizenship, and community service shape students’ worldviews and influence the decisions that they will make as future leaders.
"We are committed to supporting UMassD students and the surrounding communities that have been an integral part of our family’s life,” said Robert Leduc. “This is an investment in the future. We are honored to offer students these opportunities to not only broaden their social awareness, but contribute to improving the lives of others.”
Support from the Leducs ensures the creation of programming that continues to impact the local community, enrich the student experience, and support our on-campus family. Service-learning courses extend classroom learning into the community through meaningful, challenging real-life projects. The Leduc Leaders program creates a semester-long, service-based internship for highly motivated students who have demonstrated a commitment to civic engagement. Students
develop leadership skills at workshops and service activities conducted through Youth Civic Leadership Institutes, including the 9/11 Day of Service and Remembrance at Sharing the Harvest Community Farm at the Dartmouth YMCA in the fall, and civic engagement-focused workshops in the spring. The Leduc Center also sponsors a variety of activities that engage UMassD students with local school children as tutors and introduces them to the benefits of attending college.
Supporting service programs at UMassD results in positive change for the community and opportunities for students to acquire the skills they need to lead the way forward.
“I volunteer because I know that I have a part to play in building a healthy society,” Kunda said. “My wish is that my actions have a positive change in people’s lives and in the community.”