UCP - Volunteers in Service
The University of Central Punjab has the unique distinction of introducing the first-ever mandated volunteer/service learning component in higher education in Pakistan. The program, which was launched in spring 2007, aims to make students aware of the world and people around them, inculcating a sense of social responsibility that can only be learned outside of the classroom.
Volunteering or ‘service-learning’ is a program that many educational institutions around the world have adopted in order to give students a real sense of contributing to society, involving themselves in activities which give them a chance to help others, and an opportunity to apply what they have gained in the classroom to real-life situations.
Volunteers In Service (VIS) is a requirement for all students at UCP and carries 25 marks weightage in a given subject in each degree program. A wide variety of choice is available to students as to where they will devote their time. Special emphasis is placed on volunteering in the fields of education and literacy, NGO’s, NPO’s, Trusts, health services, and other community agencies.
Each student’s program is monitored by an advisor, and marks are given in four areas: the Partner Organization’s Evaluation of the Volunteer (12 marks), Attendance (05 marks), Teamwork (03 marks) and Report Writing (05 marks) for a total of 25 marks.
Through their work in the community, students develop their skills in teamwork, management, problem-solving and critical thinking. More importantly, they are ‘giving back’ to society by dedicating time to worthy causes. The deep personal satisfaction and sense of civic responsibility that students develop through this program starts a lifelong and life-changing thought process that continues long after leaving UCP.