Throughout its entire history, Wheelock College has been committed to making the community and region a better place to live and work. As one of Boston's leading institutions preparing students for careers in education, social work, juvenile justice, and child life, Wheelock is committed to honoring Boston's history as an educational hub. Every student (graduate and undergraduate) must fulfill community-based fieldwork to graduate.
Student Commitment to Service
In addition, the Center for Community Service at Wheelock provides students, faculty, and staff with the resources necessary to engage in volunteer opportunities and service experiences in and around Boston's community.
Each year more than 60 percent of Wheelock students contribute:
- 75-300 hours of service learning work for
- 270 organizations representing an estimated
- 100,000 hours of community service (12,500 days)
Of that total, about half of the total is for organizations in the City of Boston:
- 135 organizations and about 50,000 hours of community service (6,250 days)
Outreach to Middle and High School Students
Wheelock hosts a biennial Youth Symposium, a daylong event that brings together hundreds of middle and high school students from Greater Boston in an effort to engage young people in becoming leaders, combating negative messages, as well as matriculating into and completing college. The first symposium in 2007, "Bridges to Hope and Understanding: Exploring Truth and Reconciliation," featured Nobel Peace Prize recipient Archbishop Desmond Tutu. The participants explored truth, reconciliation, forgiveness, and the concept of "ubuntu"—an African philosophy of interconnectedness.
The 2007 Symposium inspired students to later organize their own group called SPARK the Truth. Dedicated to nonviolent, peaceful coexistence for young people in Boston, SPARK the Truth has worked with Wheelock's Pre-Collegiate Office to bring nearly 5,000 young people to events on the Wheelock Campus focused on leadership development, mentoring, social justice, academic support, coursework, and college success planning. Members of SPARK the Truth were also an integral part of planning for the 2010 Youth Symposium.
At the 2010 symposium, award-winning actor and bestselling author Hill Harper told students to seek out people who will support their goals and dreams, such as teachers, family members, or other mentors. Entitled "Bridges to Our Future: The Next Generation of Leaders," the event brought together 500 middle and high school students from Boston, Brookline, and Cambridge-from public, private, pilot, and charter schools-for a high-energy discussion about leadership, mentoring, and self respect. All of the students completed a companion three-week curriculum created specifically for the symposium.