CGIU Day of Service

About Us

Founded in 1996 by former First Lady Michelle Obama and part of the Office of Civic Engagement, UCSC serves the University's 5,000 undergraduates and 10,000 graduate and professional school students by engaging them with communities and partners to build a more just Chicago.

UCSC's goal is to support students in becoming productive, thoughtful citizens and effective, inspiring leaders by providing students with service opportunities that complement a rigorous academic experience. UCSC encourages students to explore Chicago, to make meaningful connections with diverse communities throughout the city, to develop friendships with other social-minded students, and to apply classroom learning to understand and address complex societal issues.

UCSC offers different civic engagement options tailored to student interests: volunteer referrals, student-run groups, campus-wide days of service, a freshmen pre-orientation service week, community-building and social justice programs, tie-ins with course work, and community-based research opportunities and internships at local organizations. These organizations include community nonprofits, hospitals, businesses, and government agencies.





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UCSC Chicago Bound

Civic Leadership Model

The ability to effect meaningful social change involves the development of a number of interrelated civic competencies. Some of these, such as regular reflection on the implications of one's choices and an awareness of one's own potential for contribution, are highly individualized. Others, such as empathy, collaboration, and commitment to diversity, affect how one behaves in groups. Still others, such as an understanding of systemic issues of injustice and a commitment to socially responsible action in the face of these, affect how one understands oneself as a citizen.

UCSC programming helps students develop specific competencies in each of these domains, with the goal of supporting all our programs' participants in their holistic development as leaders in their communities and in their fields.

Civic Leadership Model

Social Change Model

The Social Change Wheel diagram highlights 12 different-but-complementary models of activity for making social change happen.  Although UCSC's various programs do not represent all of these approaches, examples of each can be found at work across the University of Chicago and throughout the city.  UCSC collaborates with our many partners, both on- and off-campus and from the private, non-profit, and government sectors, to ensure that every possible avenue towards a more just Chicago is explored by and available to UChicago students.

Social Change Wheel

Schedule an Appointment with a Member of Our Team

We’re happy to speak with students and other members of the University community about our offerings and how to get involved off-campus as a volunteer. During the academic year, to learn more about opportunities and get connected, feel welcome to set up an appointment with a peer advisor by emailing

To schedule an appointment about a student organization, a particular UCSC program, or any other topic, contact UCSC Assistant Director Nick Currie and he can assist you.