Parents and Families

Aaron Hurst of the Taproot Foundation

 

What’s amazing about Michigan is how the university enables you to make the Michigan Experience your experience.  

The U-M Ginsberg Center’s mission is to engage students, faculty and community members in learning together through community service and civic engagement in a diverse, democratic society. Aaron Hurst shares how his time there as a student benefited his career and his life after college:

My experience at Project Community was not only the highlight of my four years at Michigan, it set me on my professional path and serves as inspiration to this day for much of my work… as a student [I] signed up for teaching creative writing in prison.  It was… led by a senior and focused on reflections confined to sociology and social justice. When the leader graduated, I asked the staff administrator, Joe Galura, if I could lead the program the next year.  I shared my vision of connecting organizational psychology to the process and he loved the idea. My senior year, I was honored to win the Michigan Campus Compact Award for the program.  I was not only the first student to win but also the first non-tenured faculty member.  Joe and I proudly shared the honor.

Project Community is a program that enables undergraduate students to engage in community service learning and reflection for course credit, in subject areas such as education, gender and sexuality, public health, and criminal justice.

This experience was directly responsible to my founding the Taproot Foundation, which has generated over $100 million in pro bono resources around the country and radically changed the face of volunteerism around the world. Those lessons from my first semester were the same insights that sparked the idea for Taproot.  Service is one of the best ways to develop corporate employees…  Service isn't something you do outside your career but how you use your skills to make an impact… make those skills sharper and become a better and happier person.

If you’re interested in hearing more about the impact Michigan had on Aaron’s life, we encourage you to check out this short video. Additionally, anyone interested in staying in touch with Ginsberg Center opportunities and programs can sign up for their weekly update newsletter

 

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