As James Madison University continues to make strides to become the national model for the engaged university, we at the foundation strive to support that trifold-vision. With your help, we’ve strengthened initiatives that aim to realize JMU’s vision. 

Center for Service Learning

Service learning is an important part of the Madison Experience at JMU—one that our Dukes embrace with ardor. We believe that service is at the heart of education, and to that end, partnerships between the university and the community serve as the foundation for all programs, making JMU an undisputed national leader in service-learning. As Drew Stelljes, JMU alumni and Assistant Vice President of Engagement and Leadership at William and Mary puts it, “JMU’s center has been a leader in service-learning for nearly 30 years. Where many of our nation's most prestigious colleges are just now considering the university role in the community, JMU has been dedicated to fulfilling this part of its public mission for decades. JMU’s commitment to promoting positive social change by working with diverse community partners has garnered the respect of peers throughout the country.” 

Study Abroad

In a global society it is important that JMU students have the opportunity to study abroad. In this interconnected global marketplace, employers are seeking students with international skills that can only be gained through an engaging learning experience abroad. Expanding access to study abroad programs and scholarships is vital. “My time abroad in London, while at JMU was a life and career-altering experience. The experience accelerated my learning about culture, people and global complexity, and positioned me well for an exciting and rewarding career. I often reflect back on those moments abroad as the most meaningful and formative of my college experience. I believe that every student should get a similar chance to explore and absorb another culture while at JMU,” says John Hinshaw, JMU alumni and Executive Vice President at Hewlett Packard.

Valley Scholars

The Valley Scholars program is JMU’s initiative to invest in the future of the Shenandoah Valley by demonstrating equality in education regardless of financial ability and background. The experience begins in the eighth grade and culminates with a scholarship to JMU of full tuition and fees. Many of these young scholars will be the first in their families to reach and succeed in college. They will be engaged in field trips, service projects, career explorations, summer enrichment sessions and mentoring by JMU students. In this way, community engagement and engaged learning cross in a life-changing opportunity for students that wouldn’t be possible without our donors. 

It is through you that JMU students have the chance to show their humanitarian spirit, take part in vital learning in an international environment and mentor local youths who are the future of the Shenandoah Valley community. Through your dedication to James Madison University, we are establishing JMU as a national model for engaged service-learning, arming our students with the capacity to compete in a global marketplace and uplifting entire communities. 

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