April 12, 2019

The Virginia School Boards Association (VSBA) has recognized Sandy Cooke, director of civic engagement at Hampden-Sydney College, in appreciation of the many ways she and the College partner with Prince Edward County Public Schools (PECPS).

Sandy Cooke receiving an award at the Prince Edward County School Board OfficeHampden-Sydney’s civic engagement program in general—and Cooke’s work in particular—puts the College’s mission of forming good men and good citizens into action, fulfilling one of the College’s core values that Hampden-Sydney men be “active and informed participants in the life of their communities.”

At a ceremony at the Prince Edward County School Board Office on April 10, Cooke received the 2019 VSBA Business Honor Roll award, which recognizes local businesses and organizations that make vital contributions to local schools. As the College’s director of civic engagement, Cooke facilitates collaboration between Hampden-Sydney students and the local community, and schools have long been an area of focus.

It has been a pleasure building a relationship between H-SC and the Prince Edward County Public Schools. The children of our community are important to me and to many of our Hampden-Sydney students, as well.

Sandy Cooke

Through Cooke’s leadership and efforts, Hampden-Sydney students have impacted all three schools in the Prince Edward County district. Among the projects she has helped develop are a little brother mentorship program at the elementary school, the creation of an outdoor classroom at the high school, and the new Taking Flight program at the middle school, which empowers students to practice responsible behavior and develop strong study habits.

Many of the projects, like the Taking Flight initiative, are student-driven, according to Cooke. “Whenever a student comes up with an idea for community service, we try to make it happen,” she explains. “All of our projects with PECPS have been extremely enjoyable to work on, and I look forward to many more in the future.”

Civic Engagement at H-SC

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