• Aspire: Do Something Great

    Aspire is a co-curricular program at ODU that offers motivated students a unique opportunity to participate in distinctive experiences in service, vocation, leadership, culture and faith. Aspire is designed to engage and empower you, prepare you for your chosen career, and motivate you to have a lifelong passion to be a positive influence in the lives of others.

    What is Aspire?

    Aspire highlights ODU’s mission to serve “individuals committed to intellectual, spiritual and professional growth to become lifelong learners committed to serving others in a  global society, as ethical and effective leaders grounded in the pursuit of truth, justice and peace.” Aspire is both rewarding and rigorous.

    As an Aspire member, you will be supported by faculty and staff through individual and small group meetings. You will develop meaningful relationships with your fellow Aspire members and participate in an annual retreat devoted to your success and growth.

    What do we do?

    Aspire members will be expected to complete the following requirements before they graduate:

    • Perform a minimum of 80 hours of community service.
    • Complete an internship.
    • Participate in Aspire specific activities and programs such as retreats, group events and presentations.
    • Attend meetings with your Program Guide (see below).
    • Maintain satisfactory progress towards graduation.
    • Participation in three "endorsed experiences" in each of the following categories: leadership, culture and faith. An "endorsed experience" is a program where students are active participants. Examples include: Emerging Leaders program; a lecture accompanied by a processing session; Campus Ministry retreat; creation and development of an initiative.

    Why should I join?

    As a member of Aspire, you will have an opportunity to develop relationships with other motivated ODU students and enhance your professional network and personal profile prior to graduation. In addition to experiencing personal, professional and spiritual development, you will be recognized for your exceptional commitment to ODU and its mission.

    As an Aspire member, you will also receive these special incentives:

    • Recognition at Celebrating Leadership Awards and annual Aspire retreat.
    • Aspire apparel.
    • Special recognition from the Office of the President at graduation. 
    • Letter of recommendation from the President in your final year at ODU for job or graduate school applications. This letter would include a summary of your unique participation in the program.

    Program Guides

    Program Guides are members of the faculty and staff who provide direct support to 3-5 Aspire students. Guides will meet with their small group 2 times per semester. These meetings will be focused on reviewing the participants’ experiences and providing support where needed. During these meetings, Guides will facilitate a discussion among participants that is reflective in nature and serves to reinforce the program lessons. Guides may also review participant progress and help participants prepare for the upcoming semester.

    Who can join?

    First and second-year ODU students are invited to apply for Aspire. Students may major in any field of study.

    How can I apply?

    You can apply to become a member of Aspire by completing our short application form. Applications for the spring 2015 term will be accepted through the fall 2014 semester.


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