On Tuesday State Representative Trey Martinez Fischer (D - San Antonio) filed House Bill 22, which would require students at state universities to perform 20 hours of community service in order to receive a baccalaureate degree or a certificate for an undergraduate program requiring at least 60 semester credit hours.
“I'm fine with that,” said UTSA student Ian Macray. “I actually have quite a bit of community service that I do so it’s a good idea to get students out in the community.”
Students would be allowed to pick from a list of government entities, non-profit organizations, or pitch their own ideas to a university office responsible for monitoring the program.
Most college campuses provide plenty of opportunities for students to do volunteer work, be it through fraternities and sororities, or campus clubs. But some students said the most difficult part of fulfilling the requirement would be finding the time to fit it into their busy schedules.
“To make it mandatory is really preposterous,” said Texas State University senior Larnell Anderson. “People have schedules and different times and places they need to be all the time.”
If approved the requirement would not go into effect until the 2015-2016 school year. While still in its infancy, the bill is receiving mixed reviews on area campuses.
Current students said the requirement could keep some people from attending Texas schools, but admitted most students would do whatever it takes to graduate.
“Studying, working, commuting, driving, anything you got to do takes up a lot of time,” said TSU senior Eric Fuentes. “But over the course of 4 years, it might not be too bad.”