Towson University is delivering on its commitment to be a good neighbor through service, engagement and investment. We don't simply enjoy the safe, beautiful community we call home — we take pride in being part of the effort to make it such a special place.
Over the years, Towson University has provided strong leadership in fostering good neighbor relations with businesses, non-profits and neighborhood associations by partnering with the community on initiatives and ordinances. Part of our commitment is demonstrated by the long-standing funding grant from TU's Division of Student Affairs to the Baltimore County Police Department's Towson precinct ("Towson University gives county grant to police unruly students this spring," April 3). This supplemental support allows additional BCPD offices to focus on patrolling nearby campus communities during major campus event weekends, such as Tigerfest. We've expanded our funding since the inception of this community-praised program.
We also have set clear expectations with our students about community engagement and being good neighbors and champions for the public good.
Later this month, Towson University will host its 9th annual Big Event (and 15th annual town gown clean-up day), a day in which Towson University students, staff, faculty and alumni set out to volunteer in the community. It has grown to include more than 2,000 students and nearly 200 residential, business and commercial project sites. This year, The Big Event falls the day before Earth Day. Where in years past our volunteer efforts have led to planting a community garden or simply raking leaves in a homeowner's yard, this year's activities include cleaning the watershed for a local stream.
And when it comes to giving and giving back, the Tigers don't stop there. Community engagement and serving our greater community is not only a priority but also part of our culture. Our students complete thousands of hours of community service each year. After being ranked sixth in the nation — and first among men's programs — for student-athlete volunteer hours last year, the Tigers' athletic department was just named No. 2 among all Division I schools in the NCAA Team Works' Helper Helper Community Service Competition.
At TU, giving back is not limited to just one day or one event. We teach all of our Tigers that the most essential purpose of their academic experience is learning to make a difference.
Deb Moriarty, Towson
The writer is vice president of student affairs at Towson University.
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