Last week, Democratic Presidential Candidate Barack Obama spoke in Colorado Springs, CO, on national service and service-learning. Obama cites service as having had an immeasurable effect on his life, helping him to discover himself and his place in the larger story of America.
Obama addresses his plan to integrate service-learning, saying:
"Finally, we need to integrate service into education, so that young Americans are called upon and prepared to be active citizens.
Just as we teach math and writing, arts and athletics, we need to teach young Americans to take citizenship seriously. Study after study shows that students who serve do better in school, are more likely to go to college, and more likely to maintain tha tservice as adults. So when I'm President, i will set a goal for all American middle and high school students to perform 50 hours of service a year, and for all college students to perform 100 hours of service a year. This means that by the time you graduate college, you'll hace done 17 weeks of service.
We'll reach this goal in several ways. At the middle and high school level, we'll make federal assistance conditional on school districts developing service programs, and give schools resources to offer new service opportunities. At the community level, we'll develop public-private partnerships so students can serve more outside the classroom."
Obama encourages American citizens to rise to the occasion, and accept the call to service, saying, "Loving your country must mean accepting your responsibility to do your part to change it. If you do, your life will be richer, and our country stronger."
To see Senator Obama's speech in Colorado Springs, please visit this link:
Let us know what you think about Senator Obama's proposal to promote service-learning and youth civic engagement.