Each year since 2015 the Montana Campus Compact network has awarded at least six scholarships to civically engaged college students from across Montana. The Civic Engagement Scholarship honors students who have invested significant amounts of time, energy and resources to service efforts that have positively changed their institutions, communities and the world - all while actively pursuing a degree or certificate. Today we announce a new name for this prestigious scholarship: the George M. Dennison Civic Engagement Scholarship!
George M. Dennison (1935-2017) was the longest serving president of the University of Montana. Among his accomplishments was his tireless record of service. In 1993 he co-founded the Montana Campus Compact, a network of colleges and universities committed to community engagement. George worked closely with CEO colleagues from state, private and tribal institutions to create a network of presidents who shared the values of community engagement and the public purposes of higher education. He co-chaired the MTCC board with the University of Great Falls' Frederick Gilliard for many years.
George also chaired the Governor's Commission on Community Service, helping support national service, service learning and volunteerism in Montana. During his time on the Commission, he worked with Reach Higher Montana to create the Youth Serve Montana Scholarship, which still is awarded annually to 100 incoming college freshmen attending Montana Campus Compact affiliate institutions.
Dennison's legacy can still be very much felt to this day. When the board of the Montana Campus Compact created the George M. Dennison Civic Engagement Scholarship it was done to honor the vision that reminds us that we are better together, that we should strive to find common ground across political divides, and that the core purpose of an education is to serve the public good. The George M. Dennison Civic Engagement Scholarship honors exemplary Montana college students who, like George, have made noticeable positive differences in the communities where they live.
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