Julie Tille received her undergraduate degrees in social work and psychology at Colorado State University before coming to Westminster College to complete a Masters in education. She says these areas came as a natural fit for her because of her life-long commitment to community service. Julie joined AmeriCorps VISTA working on a year-long, full time service project upon graduation, and from there, she accepted a one-year position with Westminster with the, at that time called, Volunteer Center. Shortly after coming to the college, the job became a full time position, and Julie jumped on the opportunity. Since that time 13 years ago, Julie has gone on to transform the position she inherited.
Since coming into the position, Julie has seen the Volunteer Center transform into the Center for Civic Engagement, and the ideals of service have become a strategic initiative, promoted under former college president Michael Bassis. Julie says the purpose of the Center for Civic Engagement is to be a resource for students looking to make a difference in the community. “We can provide money, give support, and offer classes to work hands-on with students.” The Center’s newest initiative is the MERRIT Take Action Project. The MERRIT Take Action Project has a staff member and a student collaborate and work for a year doing service. Along with MERRIT, the Center of Civic Engagement also has a developmental institutional priority with the City of South Salt Lake. After school programs such as Promise South Salt Lake and Hser Ner Moo have been hugely successful student involvement initiatives. “Needs in the community are always relevant, and in the position I am in now, I can work institutionally and with students to make a difference, and better yet, I can bring my job home with me to instill that commitment to service in my kids.”
Julie is always looking for volunteers and get people engaged in service projects. If you would like to give back to the community, you can contact Julie Tille at firstname.lastname@example.org or call simply call 211 during the holiday season to be connected with service projects.