Engaging the World

In the words of the College’s mission statement: “Students who come to Middlebury learn to engage the world.” Many do that through service to the community. Each year, more than 1,500 students work as volunteers with organizations addressing community needs in the Middlebury area and around the world.

Profiles | Beyond the Classroom

Connor Hershkowitz ’12 volunteered during winter term at Wildlife Friends Foundation of Thailand, assisting in the care of elephants and other
wildlife rescued from illegal trade and abusive living situations.


Community service enables students to deepen their learning and apply course-related theory and content to solve real problems, whether they are volunteering with the Middlebury ambulance corps or a local homeless shelter, serving as translators for Mexican farm workers in Vermont, or building a house with Habitat for Humanity. They learn to identify, understand, and respect others’ needs while acquiring valuable experience in real work situations.

The Civic Engagement team within the Center for Education in Action helps students identify volunteer opportunities that suit their skills and interests and to obtain funding for their own service-related initiatives, including unpaid internships and shorter-term, project-based work. Increased funding would not only support more students engaged in service projects but would also forge additional links to our local, national, and international communities.