So, why would a student want to take a service-learning course? Isn't it a lot of work?
While it is true that service-learning requires that students spend time out of class working with community partners on a variety of projects, the benefits are well-established in three ways. First, we know from research that in these classes students are more motivated because they are applying what they are doing in a real world context. Because they are using their critical thinking and problem solving skills, they are also developing a deeper understanding of the material in the course and the society in which they live. The reflective component of service-learning enables students to link what they are studying with their experience in the community for more powerful insights.
The second reason why service-learning is important is because it prepares students to be citizens. While graduating from a prestigious college comes with many benefits, it also comes with obligations. The best and brightest members of our society have a responsibility to attend to the needs of others. If we are to live a society that is fair and just, we must contribute to the well-being of others. Participating in a service-learning class sets a tone for the rest of a student's life. It reinforces the importance of civic engagement and a commitment to the common good.
Finally, participating in a service-learning experience gives students a competitive advantage. It shows employers and graduate schools that such students have done something more than take classes. Service-learning also enhances communication abilities. Often, students must learn to frame their messages so that they appropriate and understandable to someone who is much different than themselves. Such perspective is essential to success in our multicultural world.
Spring term 2013
ACCT 444: VITA Dr. Janine Finley
EDUC 451: Service Internship Dr. Mike Schroeder
LSFY 103-05: Urban (School) Legends Dr. Mike Egan
RELG 207: Christian Scriptures Dr. Eric Steward
RELG 388: Serving Refugees Dr. Dan Lee
Summer term 2013
BIOL 390: Nicaragua Medical Service-learning Dr. Dara Wegman-Geedey