History


Background

  • In the early 1990’s, more and more Dartmouth students were seeking to include community service in their Dartmouth Experience.
  • Realizing this, and being at a time in their lives to give something meaningful back to society - to become more personally involved in some form of public service work themselves - a group of Dartmouth ‘59 classmates decided to provide the vehicle for these students.
  • The DPCS Alumni Board was set up at the outset to coordinate all the start-up activities necessary to get the program operational, working in collaboration with the Tucker Foundation office at Dartmouth.

The Program

  • The vehicle for mobilizing Dartmouth alumni and students to participate in this public service initiative became Dartmouth Partners in Community Service (DPCS).
  • The DPCS initiative is a partnership of alumni, students and the College working in behalf of community service organizations:
    • An undergraduate student identifies a worthy community service organization (CSO) either in his or her hometown or anywhere else in the United States.
    • The student announces his or her intentions to the Tucker Foundation, which was selected by the College administration to be the College partner because it already administered fellowship programs for Dartmouth students (without mentors) and their operational experience and counsel was invaluable.
    • The student requests for and is interviewed by Tucker personnel and members of the DPCS Alumni Board, guided by a comprehensive battery of documentation from the student, the CSOs and written references.
    • Upon approval of the student and his or her desired CSO, an alumni/ae is sought to serve as a “mentor” for the Dartmouth student.
  • Dartmouth Partners in Community Service was born!

The DPCS Mission

  • One of the first accomplishments of the DPCS Alumni Board was to develop a Mission Statement for the program:

To inspire Dartmouth students to join with Dartmouth alumni and their families
in addressing problems facing our society.

The Launch of the DPCS Program

  • In early 1995 former U.S. Surgeon General C. Everett Koop took a personal interest in the DPCS program, as he felt DPCS complemented his Institute’s community service programs. Therefore, he became involved in publicizing the DPCS program.
  • It was decided by the Board to gain early operational experience with two internships, which were done in the summer of 1994. With that pilot experience in hand, the project was officially launched at the 35th Reunion of the Class of 1959 in June 1995, when several more internships were implemented.

Early Internships

  • Summer 1996 represented the first full term to demonstrate the intrinsic appeal and value of the DPCS project. It turned out to be a big success. Thirteen Dartmouth students served in internships along with alumni mentors from Boston to Alaska. And over $15,000 was raised from ‘59 alumni to fund the program.
  • Most important, the feedback from the students on the benefits of their public service internship was superb. Here are excerpts from three student reflection papers:

“I had an amazing and wonderful set of new experiences in my DPCS program — ‘Challenge Alaska.’
I found my spirit in Alaska … It gave me not only my home …but also my calling.”

(Joshua Winterhalt ‘97)

“I had benefited immensely from the services and resources of Dartmouth, but given little in return.
The DPCS internship provided an opportunity to return that balance to my life.”

(Mark Kutolowski ‘99)

“I benefited tremendously from the unique mentor program that DPCS provides for its interns . . .
and from my host family in Philadelphia - also a Dartmouth alumnus. They taught me the truth
about life that I would not be able to learn from an Ivy League education. It was an experience
that has broadened my horizon and helped me grow intellectually and emotionally.”

(Chen Yang ‘97)

Expansion of the DPCS Program

  • Buoyed by the successful Summer ‘96 results, and with the aggregate experience of 26 internships and a continuing buildup of interest in the DPCS program among alumni, students, and Tucker, the Board decided to move from the initial ‘59 pilot stage to one involving all alumni(ae) via Dartmouth Class organizations.
  • Such an expanded partnership was deemed essential to accelerate the achievement of the program’s original vision: to make it available to the broadest possible group of Dartmouth students - someday a part of every student’s Dartmouth Experience - and consequently to enhance the total impact of the program on America’s community service organizations.
  • This expanded DPCS program would represent the first collaborative and enduring partnership among all Dartmouth alumni(ae), young and old, in a common service endeavor. In this way, a truly unifying and broad-based DPCS partnership was formed.
  • The Board developed a Strategic Plan for this expansion that addressed issues of managing, funding, and expanding the program into the future on a progressive, step-by-step manner. That plan was approved by the Board on March 19, 1997. To achieve its goals, the Board realized it needed to:
    • Move from an entirely volunteer DPCS operation at Tucker to one with a paid staff;
    • Shift from a program primarily aimed at first year students and seniors in the summer term to one open to all four classes, all terms; and
    • Greatly expand the number and geographic diversity of the CSO internship opportunities for the students.
  • Therefore, a DPCS Director was hired at Tucker to administer participation and direct communication to all Dartmouth students during all four terms.
  • In the spirit of the new partnership involving the wider alumni constituency, the Board decided that each alumni class - including the Class of ‘59 - would be responsible for contributing to the “start-up” organizational fund, with the ongoing funding of internship stipends coming from annual, individual gifts. Importantly, each full partner would be represented on the Alumni Board. Each class would develop CSO internship opportunities, and mentors, from its own constituency.
  • Although the overall DPCS partnership would be a collective undertaking, each participating class could consider its internships filled as being designated and sponsored by their individual class. Therefore, there would be freedom for classes to build the interest and spirit of their own constituencies by supporting their own internships within the overall DPCS program. This could also include inviting their student interns to their class meetings, getting more involved as a group with a particular CSO, etc. But, through the joint financial synergy of all participants, the overall program could expand with paid, professional DPCS staff at Tucker.

Alaska gave me not only
my home and my health,
but my calling...


DPCS Intern