President’s Volunteer Service Award

In 2003, President George W. Bush created the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation to find ways to recognize the valuable contributions volunteers are making in our nation. The President's Council on Service and Civic Participation created the President's Volunteer Service Award program as a way to thank and honor Americans who, by their demonstrated commitment and example, inspire others to engage in volunteer service.

On Oct. 24, 2006, California State University, Northridge became an awarding institution. CSUN will now award this prestigious award to individual students, clubs, organizations, faculty and staff at CSUN. This award serves as an example of CSUN's commitment to service in the San Fernando Valley. For more information, visit the Presidential Service Award website.


About the Award

Award recipients receive the following.

  • An official President's Volunteer Service Award pin
  • A personalized certificate of achievement
  • A note of congratulations from the President of the United States
  • A letter from the President's Council on Service and Civic Participation

 Award Levels

Award Level and Hour Requirements
Award LevelIndividual Hour RequirementsGroup Hour Requirements

Bronze Level

Young Adults (15-25): 100-174 hours

Adults (26+): 100-249 hours

Groups: 200-499 hours

Silver Level

Young Adults (15-25): 175-249 hours

Adults (26+): 250-499 hours

Groups: 500-999 hours

Gold Level

Young Adults (15-25): 250+ hours

Adults (26+): 500+ hours

Groups: 1000+ hours

Award Certification Procedure

For the purpose of the President's Volunteer Service Award, a group, club or organization is an association of two or more individuals. Each member of the group, club or organization must complete at least 25 hours of service with a group's cumulative hours being at least 200 hours within the Recognized Service Period. Please note that every member must complete a minimum of 25 hours of service within the Recognized Service Period.

Recognized Service Period

The President's Volunteer Service Award recognizes CSUN students, clubs, organizations, faculty and staff that have achieved a certain standard measured by the number of hours served over an academic calendar period, which will begin August 1 and end April 1 of the following calendar year.

Earning the Award through Service

Record of Hours Served

Students, clubs, organizations, faculty, and staff must submit a record of hours served each month to The Unified We Serve program assistant in the Matador Involvement Center. Original signatures are required.

Service Activities

For the purpose of the President's Volunteer Service Award the volunteer(s) must participate in at least one of the following four areas of service.

Youth Achievement

Includes volunteer activities such as mentoring, coaching, tutoring, improving literacy in areas such as reading and finance, and volunteering to keep young people engaged academically.

Parks and Open Spaces

Includes volunteer efforts to conserve and protect our parklands and gardens, neighborhood cleanups and creating safe playgrounds. It also includes creating safe and meaningful outdoor activities for individuals to enjoy the environment and our natural resources.

Healthy Communities

Includes volunteer efforts to help the elderly, disabled, diseased, hungry or homeless, and to improve the economic health of the community. These could include volunteering for health and nutrition education services, immunizations campaigns, resume building, career training, disease screening, hospital support, blood drives, veterans outreach, working on local public health programs, micro-enterprise and business development.

Public Safety and Emergency Response

Includes volunteer efforts for individuals and families for individuals and families to make their homes and communities safer from the threats of crime, terrorism and disasters of all kinds. It includes preparedness training, volunteer firefighters and programs such as Citizen Corps, Neighborhood Watch, Medical Reserve Corps and Volunteers in Police Service.

Prohibited Activities

There are certain activities that will not count towards the President’s Volunteer Service Award. The list of Prohibited Activities includes the following.

  • Participating in efforts that influence legislation
  • Engaging in partisan political activities or other activities designed to influence the outcome on an election
  • Organizing or participating in petitions, protests, boycotts or strikes
  • Conducting worship services
  • Engaging in religious instruction
  • Participating in programs that include mandatory religious instruction
  • Engaging in any type of religious proselytizing
  • Providing direct benefit to a for-profit entity
  • Participating in activities that pose a significant risk to participants
  • Fundraising where less than 100 percent of proceeds go to non-profit organizations or charity causes
  • Any volunteering where other incentives are being earned, such as stipends or class credit

Register for the President’s Volunteer Service Award

Enrollment Period

The Enrollment Period for the President's Volunteer Service Award begins July 1 and will end on Thanksgiving. There are a total of 500 slots available to CSUN individuals and groups, which will be administered on a first-come first-served basis by signing up online (email Unified We Serve) or in the Matador Involvement Center.