The Mulvaney Center for Community, Awareness, and Social Action

Drop Shadow

The Mulvaney Center

Karen and Tom Mulvaney

Center for Community, Awareness, & Social Action (CASA)


The Mulvaney Center is a community, one that celebrates the individuality and uniqueness of each student. Aligned with USD’s core value of community, we invite students to join a family of peers, alumni, faculty, community partners, and staff from diverse backgrounds who share a longing to connect and join.  Through immersion, the Center gives students the opportunity to expand their community outside of USD to join the broader San Diego and global communities.  The Center recognizes the wisdom held by the local and global communities it joins, resources and knowledge.  Partnering with neighborhoods, social agencies, and organizations throughout San Diego, USD is committed to realize the common good by building strong relationships and working co-intentionally with our partners  "COMMON UNITY."  Through compassionate and reciprocal community engagement the lines between service-provider and service-recipient are blurred until we are in solidarity with one another. 


USD is committed to preparing leaders dedicated to ethical conduct and compassionate service.   Awareness confronts the core of one’s beliefs. Beyond that initial spark of discovery, awareness involves the capacity to take in one’s surroundings and turn inward to see how one can make a difference. Yet, the very nature of awareness is that one comes face-to-face with how things are and grows through the realization of change. Awareness exposes us to new ideas, different ways of knowing, diverse human perspectives, and opportunities for committed personal growth. Awareness transitions into something more, the potential for transformation, when the change we seek in the world is linked to larger nested systems of connection.  The “A” in CASA connects all levels of passion.  CASA’s community engagement approach aspires to create leaders whose actions continuously reflect a larger sense of responsibility towards others. Leaders who, through the practice of joining community, actively recognize and reduce the spaces that keep individuals and different communities separate.

Social Action   

The awareness of one’s impact on the larger world community and ability to be mindful of how one’s actions impact a larger societal context is at the core of Social Action and speaks to its integration into the name of the Center. Social Action is the action one takes after being transformed by a greater awareness of our interconnectedness in the world. It is the action one takes when we wish to join our purpose in community with the purpose of one another. When one practices Social Action regularly, it shapes every decision and way of living, with an eye and heart towards the ripple effects on the world.

Ways to Participate

The Mulvaney Center is a program that engages 3,000 of the 4,800 undergraduates in service annually. The Mulvaney Center supports students in various avenues for promoting community and working for social change. Our vision is global, recognizing that we can act in our immediate community, but that opportunities exist for international action as well. The following categories are ways students can participate at USD:

  • Direct Service - Direct service is an expression of our respect and concern for others. Some of our many service programs include: mentoring youth, learning about homeless issues, and tutoring adults whose first language is not English. Sign up to volunteer today.
  • Advocacy, Awareness, and Education - Advocacy gives voice to the need for changes in public policy and legislation to address injustices. College students become politically engaged through voting, lobbying, educating peers, and participating in public events or media campaigns. The Social Issues Committee combines the energy and talent of faculty, students, staff, administrators, and community members to expand awareness and facilitate action concerning pressing social issues. Heighten awareness and educate others through the Social Issues Committee.