Institution Granting Degree
Liberty University, community service, student perception, faith-based school, Christian, evangelical
This study examined student perceptions and the impact of requiring community service at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Three hundred forty six students voluntarily participated in this study. Students were asked to respond to a 25 question online survey which attempted to ascertain four key questions. First, should Liberty University should continue to require community service of it students in order to graduate? Secondly, did the students perceive their required community service as a benefit to them personally as well as to those they served? The third question to be answered through this study was how the requirement to do community service impacted student’s attitudes about serving now as well as their desire to serve in the future. Finally, since Liberty University is an evangelical Christian university, this research study was designed to investigate how the student’s religious faith impacted their attitude about performing required community service in order to graduate.
Findings revealed that a significant majority of students, 70%, supported the university’s decision to require community service in order to graduate and 76.8% also indicated that they had a positive attitude about performing required community service.
The data also showed that students do perceive their community service requirement to be beneficial to them personally as well as to those whom they served. In addition, 81% of the students who responded to the survey plan to volunteer in the future. It was also found that 80.4% believed their religious faith positively impacted their attitude concerning the required Christian/Community Service (CSER) program at Liberty University. Although additional research is needed, through this initial study, it can be recommended that Liberty University continue its requirement of community service.