The College of Education and Integrative Studies ranked No. 1 in providing the greatest amount of community service-learning hours for the 2016-2017 academic year, according to a report generated by the Center for Community Engagement.
Last year, CEIS students completed 9,240 service-learning hours.
“With a passion for social justice and a commitment to quality teaching, CEIS faculty create transformative courses through service-learning,” said Christina Gonzalez-Salgado, the center’s service-learning coordinator. “CEIS students tutor local youth, collaborate with community leaders to address food insecurity, cultivate community gardens, and assist with fundraising and program development. CEIS continues to be an excellent example of an engaged academic college for the university.”
Several studies show that service-learning has a positive outcome on students’ academic learning and ability to apply what they’ve learned to real-life situations. Additionally, it has a strong influence on interpersonal development, leadership cultivation and communication skills.
During the 2016-2017 academic year, over 500 students participated in service-learning courses offered by the Departments of Ethnic & Women’s Studies and Liberal Studies in CEIS.
“With the support of the Center for Community Engagement, I redesigned my Contemporary African American Issues course into a service-learning food justice course that gives students hands-on experience with local community-based organizations at the helm of 21st century equity and sustainability movements,” said Assistant Professor Analena Hope Hassberg, Department of Ethnic & Women’s Studies. “My students regularly help to maintain multiple urban garden sites between Los Angeles and Pomona, they do outreach and fundraising, and they have even helped with the physical construction of the Paul Robeson Community Wellness Center, the first organic wellness hub in South Los Angeles.”
Liberal Studies Assistant Professor Teresa Lloro-Bidart and her students engage in community gardening.
“My service-learning course provides our students with the opportunity to get to know and serve the community where they attend college,” said Lloro-Bidart. “After taking my course, some students start their own gardens at home and others incorporate garden-based learning into their own classrooms.”
This quarter, service-learning students will participate in a pilot program with John Marshall Middle School in Pomona. In addition to applying course content and practicing civic engagement, service-learning students will gain experience with middle school students and learn about current trends in K-12 education.
“I’m proud to hear that our college is making a positive difference in our surrounding communities,” said CEIS Dean Jeff Passe. “I commend our students for combining their academic and service goals in such a dynamic way.”
For more information about service-learning courses offered by CEIS, call 909-869-3567 or 909-869-3593.