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Fitz Center for Leadership in Community

The History of the Dayton Corps

by Maggie Schaller and Brenda Donnelly

Dayton Corps, an AmeriCorps program originally developed in partnership between the Fitz Center for Leadership in Community at the University of Dayton and the City of Dayton, is now in its second year of operation. With the support of the Dayton Metro Library, Daybreak, St. Vincent de Paul, and Homefull, the Dayton Corps members have completed nearly 27,000 hours of service to the Dayton community over the last year and a half. Since September of 2018, 4,333 hours of service have been completed by Dayton Corps members--and they are just getting started this year.

Members are both students and community members, including retirees, undergraduate and graduate students, and young people just out of high school who serve together throughout the city. Some members serve 10 hours a week during the school year while others serve in full-time appointments for a semester-length term. There are currently 29 people serving in Dayton Corps. Over the course of the year, 70 members will serve in one of the three component Corps: Dayton Neighborhood Corps, Dayton Opportunity Corps, or Dayton Education Corps. Dayton Neighborhood Corps members serve within neighborhoods on leadership development with the City of Dayton’s Planning and Community Development Department in the Carillon, Edgemont, Residence Park, and Westwood neighborhoods. Dayton Opportunity Corps members support those experiencing housing insecurity at Daybreak, St. Vincent de Paul Shelter for Women and Families, St. Vincent de Paul Gateway Shelter for Men, Homefull, and Montgomery County Homeless Solutions Office. Dayton Education Corps members support out-of-school educational programming at two Dayton Metro Library locations, the Northwest and Madden Hills branches.

Specific services provided vary from Corps to Corps but include addressing neighborhood needs, building neighborhood engagement, capacity, and community, finding suitable housing for those experiencing housing insecurity, providing employment readiness training and skill development, and providing general educational support to families and children in West Dayton.

The project was originally initiated by the Fitz Center for Leadership in community and Mayor Nan Whaley in cooperation with ServeOhio and the Corporation for National Community Service, Dayton Metro Library, and others at the University of Dayton. Members are paid a modest living allowance funded by an AmeriCorps grant, and after completing their service commitment are eligible for other AmeriCorps benefits including the Segal AmeriCorps Education award. 


Fitz Center for Leadership in Community, Dayton Corps

1401 S. Main Street, Suite 230
Dayton, Ohio 45409