“The great aim and end of all learning,” proclaimed Benjamin Franklin, is to foster an “inclination, joined with an ability, to serve mankind, one’s country, friends, and family” – namely, the common good.
Ivy CORPS (Community Outreach & Public Service) is an Ivy Council enterprise devoted to realizing Franklin’s vision of service within the Ivy League. IvyCORPS unites students, faculty, alumni, and staff from the eight Ivy League schools with their local community in an effort to increase volunteerism, strengthen school and community ties, and foster life-long connections with service groups.
In April of 2004, IvyCORPS partnered with the American Cancer Society in establishing the Society’s signature event, Relay for Life, at the Ivy League Universities. That year, the event raised over $100,000 for cancer research. To this day, Relay for Life is still held annually at most Ivy League campuses.
Over the years, IvyCORPS has help raise funds for organizations such as Adopt-A-Minefield, which helps eradicate minefields in the most endangered countries in the world, among them Afghanistan, Mozambique, and Vietnam. Additionally, IvyCORPS has partnered with the African Medical Research Foundation (AMREF) in donating money as well as creating student internships with the organization during the summers of 2008 and 2009.
In 2008, IvyCORPS began working with America’s Promise Alliance, a non-profit founded in 1997, and has since become an official partner. Recently, America’s Promise has identified high school graduation as a primary concern. They have rallied partners to help improve high school graduation rates, and IvyCORPS has been honored to contribute to their effort through mentoring, tutoring, and career exploration programs.
In 2010, at the Ivy Leadership Summit XI held at Princeton University, the Steering Board proudly announced that moving forward the IvyCORPS will focus its mission on education, intending to continue its partnership with America’s Promise Alliance as well as develop new programs and bonds with organizations which strive to cultivate the minds of the current and future generations.