Debates on human interaction with the environment, a clean-up event and a keynote speaker all took place as part of last week's Civic Engagement Week, put on by the Center for Civic Engagement (CCE).
Civic Engagement Week ended with overwhelming success, said Erin McIlraith, CCE coordinator of marketing and communication.
“The week has gone absolutely wonderfully,” McIlraith said. “A lot of people have stopped by our table in the CUB and have wanted to get more involved.”
Some of this week’s events included an Under the Big Tent Debate regarding natural and unnatural disasters on Tuesday, as well as a Cougs Care event on Wednesday, which featured a keynote address by Secretary of State Sam Reed.
Also featured in this week’s events was an Earth Day reflection on Wednesday in the CUB, a Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute event called the Paradise Creek Clean-Up on Saturday and an Eco Adventure Clean-Up and Climb on Sunday at Granite Point.
“During the Under the Big Tent Debate on Tuesday, it got pretty heated,” she said. “We had a couple faculty members and community partners as well as some student panelists, but each were very respectful to each other even though they may have disagreed. It reflected well on all the panelists.”
McIlraith said the Cougs Care event also had quite a good turnout and that there were a variety of things to learn more about community service involvement.
She said about 20 to 30 groups and courses displayed projects surrounding student spring break service events, GIVE events and Greek life organized community projects.
Reed also gave a very engaging speech during the event, she said.
“He talked a lot about civic mindedness and engagement,” McIlraith said. “The CCE winners also got to shake his hand.”
Along with the week’s schedule set of events, the CCE also had a table set up on the first floor of the CUB.
“We’ve been tabling all this week,” said Jenny Danvers (CQ-CCE website), graduate assistant administrative coordinator for the CCE. “Students could spin a wheel to win prizes by either signing up to follow us on Facebook or by writing on a leaf the service they have done for the community and sticking it up on our dream tree.”
Darryl Freeman, CCE graduate assistant community partners coordinator, said they have been trying to encourage more participation in civic engagement and community service.
During the past year, there have been a lot of people participating in civic engagement in the community, Freeman said.
“More than 7,900 students have committed more than 70,000 hours of service to the community,” he said.