The Cal Poly Pomona Center for Community Engagement continues to make an impact beyond the university, awarding stipends and mini-grants totaling more than $18,000 to faculty members for service-learning courses and projects that benefit communities throughout the Los Angeles region.
The aim of the Center for Community Engagement (CCE) is to promote service-learning, volunteering and cooperative education through sustainable partnerships with the community and industry.
“The Center for Community Engagement is proud to support the work of Cal Poly Pomona’s remarkable service-learning faculty,” says Michael Millar, director of CCE. “This is a transformative experience for our students. Their lives are changed by using their education to make a difference in the lives of others. And our faculty are there to show them the path.”
The five participants in the 2015-2016 Faculty Fellows Program were each awarded a $1,000 stipend and a $1,000 mini-grant to create service-learning courses:
- Courtney Knapp, an assistant professor of urban and regional planning, and her URP 434S class partnered students with GRID Alternatives and the Pomona Department of Neighborhood Services to identify potential markets across the Inland Empire for a solar energy program aimed at low-income households. Students assisted Pomona city staff with assessments of community centers and parks.
- Alyssa Lang, an assistant professor of art, and her ART 452S class partnered with 826LA, a nonprofit group near Echo Park, to promote literacy. Students created marketing materials that included posters, brochures and postcards to help 826LA recruit volunteers.
- Nancy Quinones, a professor in ethnic and women’s studies, and her EWS 402S class teamed with Ganesha High School in the Pomona Unified School District to form reading circles on books about empowerment. Cal Poly Pomona and Ganesha students collaborated to create books for children.
- Maryam Shafahi, an assistant professor in mechanical engineering, and her ME499S class worked with Pomona’s Homeless Outreach Program to implement an aquaponics system for the homeless. Aquaponics is a water-saving and environmentally friendly food production system. Students created the system and showed city staff and residents how to maintain it.
- Lydia Chen Shah, professor in international business and marketing, and her IBM 499S class worked with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Greater Los Angeles on a marketing campaign geared to encourage people to become mentors. Students created marketing materials, including promotional videos and social media campaigns.
Ten other faculty members received mini-grants of up to $1,000 for service-learning projects during the 2015-2016 academic year:
- Estela Ballon, a professor in liberal studies, received $950 to give alternative education students exposure to college life.
- Mike Brown, curator of Rain Bird BioTrek and a lecturer in biological sciences, created the Medicine Wheel Garden with a $1,000 grant.
- Aleida Gordon, a lecturer in human nutrition and food science, received $920 to implement a community nutrition education project.
- Peg Lamphier, a professor in interdisciplinary general education, used her $264 grant for a canyon cleanup project.
- Amalia Llombart, an assistant professor in English and foreign languages, received a $1,000 grant to examine bilingualism.
- Teresa Lloro-Bidat, an assistant professor in liberal studies, was awarded $1,000 to improve the Center Street Community Garden in Pomona.
- Monica Palomo, an associate professor in civil engineering, received $1,000 to implement community outreach efforts in engineering education.
- Jessie Vallejo, an assistant professor in music, used $868 for an audio and visual documentation project.
- Gwen Urey, a professor in urban and regional planning, received $925 to map out “Safe Routes to Pomona Schools.”
- Yan Zhao, a professor in accounting, was awarded $760 for a taxation project.
Millar encourages faculty members interested in service learning to become 2016-2017 Faculty Fellows or to apply for mini-grants for service-learning projects. Students wanting to enroll in a service-learning courses should look for the “S” designation after the class number in the course catalog.