Thursday, April 19, 2012

Retired teacher receives top volunteer honor

Jack Sunderlik, a retired high school science teacher and coach, was honored Wednesday with the Distinguished Volunteer Award at the Springfield Good as Gold Ceremony.

The University of Illinois Springfield Volunteer and Civic Engagement Center and the Junior League of Springfield sponsored the event. More than 40 people were recognized during the ceremony, which coincides with National Volunteer Week this week.

UIS senior Justin Rose of Chicago received the Star Student Award, and UIS employee Jan Kirkham the Star Staff Award.

Rose devotes at least 20 hours a week to volunteering with youths. He created an initiative with Boys and Girls Club to mentor at-risk boys on Saturdays and is a big brother in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters organization. He also is a mentor to first-year, first-generation college students at UIS.

In her role as director of experiential and service-learning programs at UIS, Kirkham has been a career-long advocate for service as part of the college experience. She has helped faculty members create service-learning classes, helped incorporate service into the general education requirements, and fostered the Applied Study Term program.

Good as Gold was featured in an April 19, 2012, article in The State Journal-Register.

Read the article online