Virginia Commonwealth University

Make it real.

Undergraduate Admissions

More than 3,000 students sign up for service-learning programs each year. Here’s what all the fuss is about.


Explore the issues. Do something about them.

VCU students are known for being engaged in the community and passionate about social issues. Our students want to make a real difference in the world and move the needle on issues that matter. As a VCU student, you can start making a difference even before you graduate—and get credit at the same time. Service-learning gives you an opportunity to transform your learning into real-world impact: by taking a service-learning class in your major, you can apply the skills you learn in the classroom to meet a community need. Through hands-on experience and real-world service with community partners around Richmond, service-learning gets you academic credit and out in the community at the same time.

Service-learning spotlights

people gardening

VCU’s dynamic and growing service-learning program enrolls more than 3,000 students each year, from first-year students to graduate students, in academic disciplines across the university. With more than 200 different service-learning courses offered each year, you can find a course in your major that will take you out of the classroom and into the community to solve real-world problems while you learn. View a video featuring VCU students who are making a difference through service-learning courses or read descriptions of some of our recent service-learning courses.

More ways to engage

Community engagement

The VCU Division of Community Engagement enhances students’ participation in numerous volunteer partnerships, including America Reads, AmeriCorps, and the Carver-VCU Partnership. For its record of successful university-community partnerships, VCU received the Carnegie Foundation designation as a community engaged campus. With the Division of Community Engagement, VCU students, faculty, staff, and our partners in the community are working together to change lives.


Started in 2012, ASPiRE, the Academic Scholars Program in Real Environments, offers a unique community engagement opportunity for VCU students. The first program of its kind at VCU, ASPiRE is a living-learning program for VCU sophomores with an innovative and comprehensive focus on community engagement at VCU and in the Richmond community. By connecting course work, co-curricular activities and a vibrant residential experience, ASPiRE aims to enrich and deepen students’ understanding of their capacity to create positive change in communities. Students selected for ASPiRE live in the West Grace Street Student Housing — South residence hall.

Students working outside