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Celebrating UC Berkeley’s Commitment to Public Service: The Public Service Center’s 50th Anniversary

Born out of the passion of students committed to creating a better world, the Public Service Center serves as the hub for public service engagement at Cal. In 2017, the Public Service Center — formerly known as the Community Projects Office and Cal Corps — celebrates its 50th anniversary — a unique opportunity to honor Berkeley’s legacy of putting forward innovative, collaborative solutions to pressing social problems. Please join us in celebrating the past, present, and future of public service, community engagement, and student leadership at Cal.

Celebrating Berkeley’s Public Service Legacy

As the Public Service Center celebrates its 50th anniversary, it is honoring Berkeley’s legacy of student leadership, community engagement, and public service at Cal. Fifty years after its humble beginnings, 13 percent of the Cal population participates in Public Service Center programs. That’s a significant number, but it doesn’t meet the demand. The goal of the Public Service Center is to be able to provide every Berkeley student with the opportunity to participate in these transformational experiences.

To honor the legacy of public service at Berkeley, please give today.

How the Public Service Center Makes a Difference

The Public Service Center partners with faculty and community members to support Berkeley students in finding their path to creating a more just and equitable world. The Center helps students secure public service internships, supports them in their leadership development, and works with faculty and graduate students to integrate community based learning into teaching and research. Through the Center, students, faculty, and communities work together to promote transformative social change and grow our next generation of civic leaders. For the past 50 years, the Public Service Center has served as the heart of civic engagement and the public service voice at Berkeley.

The PSC has a positive impact on the surrounding community

  • Each year, about 5,000 students and 200 student leaders contribute more than 140,000 hours of service to almost 190 projects.
  • For one program alone, the estimated value of services students provided has exceeded $1.7 million, and activities ranged from building housing to increasing the capacity of food banks.

The PSC is training the next generation of civic leaders

  • Connecting leadership and academic skills to service, last year alone the Center provided 135 leadership trainings, supported 22 student-led courses, advised 25 student service organizations.  Through our partnership with the American Cultures program, the PSC supported more than 40 faculty members across multiple disciplines in developing over 50 engaged scholarship courses in collaboration with 65 community partners.
  • As a result of participating in one initiative, when asked, 100% of program leaders agreed they gained the ability to take intentional action to change an unjust situation.

The PSC enhances the capacity of its partner organizations

  • A recent survey of community partners showed strong satisfaction in how the partnerships supported the organization’s progress towards achieving their goals.
  • Since 2001, the PSC has partnered closely with Berkeley and Oakland public schools, currently providing 20 schools with reading and math mentoring; PSC mentors supplement student learning in the classroom and help bring struggling students to grade level.