U student honored for community service

By Paige Fieldsted

Joshua Irvine is busy.

After all, he is a full time student, a volunteer tutor, a soccer coach and a mentor for a college success program at East High School. But he’s not complaining about his lack of free time. Irvine, a senior exercise and sports science major, has been passionate about community service for as long as he can remember.

“I feel like if I have a talent someone else doesn’t, it is my responsibility to share that with others, so all of us can be lifted up,” he said.

Irvine was recently recognized for his community service efforts by receiving the Scholar of Promise Award from the National Society of Collegiate Scholars.. The award is self-nominated and for members of NSCS who complete more than 50 hours of youth-oriented service in a 12-month period. Irvine was selected as one of 52 recipients of the award out of over 200 applicants.

Irvine said if we want to see improvement in the community, it’s up to us to get out there and do something about it. “Improving a community can’t be done by politicians,” he said. “I know that if I want something changed, I’ll have to get out there and use my talents to do it.”

The award is a way to recognize students for their commitment to service, which is one of the pillars of the group, said Stephen Loflin, executive director of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, in a written statement.

“The award distinguishes students like Joshua (who) have made an impact on their communities through service,” said Mishri Someshwar, a spokeswoman for the group. “It’s especially gratifying for us at NSCS because it shows that our members aren’t just academic high-achievers — they also strive to serve their communities.”

Irvine joined the organizaiton as a freshman because of the opportunity for community service the group provides. He is now serving as president of the Utah chapter.

“I joined because I saw it as an opportunity to get involved with other students like me and really create change,” Irvine said.

As president, Irvine is responsible for organizing several different community service projects throughout the year. He also helped to establish the program for college success at East High School. The program is in place to help students transition successfully from high school to college.

“The program is a big focus of ours because we want to students to succeed when they get here,” Irvine said. Another project the group participates in every year is a Senior Ball at an assisted living facility. The students arrange for a jazz band to play music, buy corsages and dance with residents.

“We do the whole prom-thing for the elderly,” Irvine said. “And it’s a really great experience.”

The group’s U chapter will be hosting an Integrity Day to encourage students to practice academic integrity as finals near. There will be a display set up in the Union free speech area on April 8 where students can pledge their academic integrity.

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