A word from our Executive Director, Marc Morgenstern
I went to a college whose anthem blissfully toasted “Bright college years with pleasures rife, the shortest gladdest years of life.” I imagine these words coming out of the upturned mouths of letter-sweatered undergrads, all male of course, whose biggest concern was the ratio of vodka to vermouth in their post-game martini. After all, post-grad jobs were easy to pluck.
So, with glasses held high we toast the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the Generations Invigorating Volunteerism and Education (GIVE) Act this week. Forgive the tortured acronym because GIVE, like a similar Senate bill, provides higher education grants to students who participate in community service projects.
This effort not only triples federally-supported volunteer activities, according to our friends at Mobilize.org who were instrumental in pushing the bill, it answers the other question on collegiate lips: how can I afford to do good in this economy? All the calls for national service are as hollow as an empty glass if young people can only volunteer on
According to the latest federal stats, 15.5 percent of young people ages 16-24 are unemployed, way behind the rest of the nation's workforce. Education grants are great. But the “gladdest” legislative solution is creating real jobs that combine the urge to serve with a passable payday.