The UT Service Scholars was founded in 2010 through a collaboration with The Longhorn Center for Community Engagement (LCCE) and the LBJ School of Public Affairs. LCCE serve as UT Austin’s main resource for students interested in public service, volunteerism and service-learning throughout UT and Austin communities. LCCE promotes community engagement through programs and partnerships with other campus departments to provide a community-based learning experience for instructors, students, student organizations, campus departments, community partners, and local agencies.
Service Scholars provides students with the opportunity to develop and use their leadership skills to serve the community. Scholars complete community service hours each semester while engaging in service-learning. The program provides a system for Scholars to choose where they serve while guiding them towards a specific focus area in public service. Scholars also receive the President’s Service Award upon completion of their 100 hours or more of service each year where they are recognized for their service at the national level.
The LBJ School once offered a Public Affairs course for service-learning which has since been discontinued as of summer 2018. In place of this course, students are now required to attend the programs’ seminars. Members are expected to attend all UTSS seminars throughout the school year. The seminars allow students to hear from by the private sector, non-profit organizations, UT alumni, and departments within UT. Each presentation is designed to enlighten students on different community efforts, social issues and provide networking opportunities. In addition, the seminars may include professionalism workshops which are meant to enhance students’ communication skills and assist in preparation for their careers.