A publication of the Volunteer and Service-Learning Center
What’s New in the VSLC? The holiday season is upon us, which means fall classes are ending and plans are being made for spring service-learning. The VSLC will offer service-learning workshops for faculty, co-host the seventh annual ECU Conference on Service-Learning, and release an introduction to service-learning video. These resources will be available to all faculty, so watch out for e-mail announcements in early January. End-of-semester reminders • Submit service-learning time sheets to the VSLC on or before fall commencement. • Administer end-of-semester service-learning evaluations, available from the VSLC, just prior to the end of classes. • Plan ahead! The VSLC is already identifying spring partnerships, so contact us today to make arrangements for your courses. • Add the service fair to your spring agenda—the fair is scheduled for Wednesday, January 27, location TBA. •Contact Jessica Gagne Cloutier to schedule an in class service-learning orientation for your students. Congratulations to the 11 faculty members who received the service-learning designation for their courses! The VSLC applauds your hard work and dedication.
Community Partner Spotlight Humane Society of Eastern Carolina The Humane Society of Eastern Carolina’s (HSEC) mission is to serve as a safe haven for homeless and neglected pets, and to act as a resource to the community. By educating the public about issues pertaining to animals, they work toward eliminating over breeding of dogs and cats, and teach individuals to be responsible pet owners. A nonprofit, no-kill animal adoption agency and facility, HSEC adopted out 273 cats/dogs and 1 bunny, Oreo, during the last calendar year. HSEC works closely with ECU student and faculty/staff volunteers and service-learners. Service can include basic day-to-day tasks like walking dogs and socializing animals through play and training. Long-term volunteers and service-learners can improve their communication, organization and fund raising skills by serving as adoption counselors and special event support. Specialized servicelearning projects with the HSEC have focused on improved marketing, market research, and the design of new facility maintenance tools. The HSEC is always open to new service partnerships. Contact the Volunteer and Service-Leanring Center for more information. Next Spotlight: Pitt County Substance Abuse Coalition
Spotlight on Melanie Ross Alumna, College of Education
Hot Topics Publications of Interest Quarterly Reflection Activity
Calls for Papers Grants & Funding Opportunities Conferences & Events
East Carolina University
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“We cannot live for ourselves alone. Our lives are connected by a thousand invisible threads, and along these sympathetic fibers, our actions run as causes and return to us as results.” -Herman Melville
If you look back at previous editions of Service-Learning Quarterly, you’ll find that this space is generally used to highlight a service-learning course and ECU faculty member. But what happens to all of the students affected by service-learning in such courses? Do they remember their community experience? Are they putting their learning to work after graduation? Are they still engaged in service? This quarter, we’ll catch up with Melanie Ross, a recent ECU graduate (Special Education Adapted Curriculum BS) to see where she is now, and how she uses the knowledge she gained in the community. What service-learning courses did you take at ECU? English 1100 and a REHB course. A majority of the courses in my major required at least 10 hours of service in the community. At which agencies did you serve? RHA Howell Center, Greenville Recreation and Parks, and the Boys and Girls Club. At RHA Howell, I had the opportunity to work with a number of children. In particular, I would go and work with a sweet girl. We would work on goals, such as increasing both of our vocabularies in American Sign Language. Through this meeting, I was able to increase my communication skills with an individual who used something other than a spoken (verbal) language. How did service-learning benefit you? A lot of times as students, we look at assignments and wonder why we have to do it, but with service-learning courses I found that the assignments were fun, beneficial, and we had hands-on experiences outside of the classroom. How did service-learning benefit you professionally? The agencies I had experience with assisted me in my major. Working with individuals with disabilities in any environment would assist me in my future role in education. It showed me what I did and did not want to do, [and] also areas I needed to work on before having my own classroom. Are you currently using any of the lessons you learned in the community in your career? If so, how? Oh of course! Having the opportunity to involve myself in such activities in college provided me with many resources. Now in my career, I can look back at my list of resources and use them! I have a contact list of people that includes local educators, churches, and community organizations. What did you learn about the community through service-learning? A lot. People would be surprised of what they find out about their community and themselves when they serve. Not only are there great resources out there, connections to build, [but there are] children to mentor, elders who need a laugh, people who need help, and I was able to help. Having that experience in Greenville, I feel that I should educate myself with the community I live in now. What did you learn about diversity? I love diversity! Everyone, regardless of race, ethnicity, religion, etc. can bring so much to the table and we can learn from them. Even though two people have a similar experience, the way in which they interpret the experience can be different. What would you say now to students/faculty interested in service-learning? Do it! What is holding you back? When you write out the pros and cons, your pros will outweigh the cons. As individuals, a class, a community and a city, you will grow in yourselves and become stronger. So do it, you won’t regret it.
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Publications of Interest
Faculty, students, and community stakeholders should all be mindful of ending service-learning experiences with thoughtful evaluation, reflection, acknowledgement, and communication. • Review and submit all expected deliverables on time.
Out Now Lima, M., Strait, J. (2009) The Future of Service Learning: New Solutions for Sustaining and Improving Practice. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, LLC.
• Evaluate next steps. Students should participate in meaningful reflections, while community partners and faculty should determine the future of the partnership.
Barnes, K., Redlawsk, D. & Rice, T. (2009) Civic Service: Service-Learrning with State and Local Government. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
• Say good-bye professionally. A formal good-by is courteous, and should never be overlooked.
On the web Volunteering in America: Information on Volunteerism and Civic Engagement www.volunteeringinamerica.gov/
• Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Faculty and students should not commit to additional volunteer or service-learning activities they cannot complete. • Exchange contact information and gain permission to use any photographs, video or case studies for planned academic or professional purposes.
Assessing the Journey
• What are the learning objectives for this course? • Are you on track to master those objectives? • What evidence is there to support your perception of your progress? • What adjustments, if any, must you make? • How capable are you in making these adjustments?
• How has your service experience impacted your learning? • What contributions have you made at your community site? Be specific & thorough. • Do you feel your contributions have been helpful to your community site? Why or why not? • Would your community supervisor agree? • What evidence do you have to support this perception? • Are there adjustments that might help you learn more academically? If so, what are they? • What steps can you take to help you reach course goals? • Are there any ideas that you wish to share with your classmates? Instructor? Community supervisor?
Quarterly Reflection Activity
Specific goals and learning objectives should be presented to students at the beginning of each semester. Students should, therefore, be encouraged to evaluate their progress in mastering these objectives, including those that relate directly to service experiences. The following prompt questions can be used in class discussions, online discussions, or reflective writing assignments to initiate the evaluation process.
Campus Compact Annual Member Survey Results www.compact.org/about/statistics/
Call for Proposals Higher Education, Emerging Technologies and Community Partnerships Concepts, Models and Applications We seek manuscripts that document and assess partnerships between institutions of higher education and K-12 schools, nonprofit organizations, government agencies, and corporations that have been made successful (or even unsuccessful in interesting ways) in part through the use of emerging and evolving digital technologies. To review the full call online, go to: www.igi-global.com/requests/details.asp?ID=714 Proposal Submission Deadline: December 30, 2009
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Grants and Funding Opportunities Open Meadows Foundation offers grants to projects that: • are designed and implemented by women and girls • reflect the diversity of the community served by the project in both its leadership and its organization • promote building community power • promote racial, social, economic, and environmental justice • have limited financial access or have encountered obstacles in their search for funding For more information, go to: www.openmeadows.org/ Application Deadline: February 15, 2010.
Conferences and Events Pathways to Achieving Civic Engagement Conference February 10, 2009, Elon University, Elon, NC org.elon.edu/nccc/events/slc.html
Mark Your Calendars! MLK Day of Service January 18, 2010
Sponsored by: the Volunteer and Service-Learning Center More information available soon at: www.ecu.edu/vslc
2010 Gulf-South Summit on Service-Learning and Civic Engagement through Higher Education March 3-5, 2010, The University of Georgia, Athens, GA www.georgiacenter.uga.edu/conferences/gulf_south/ The 21st Annual National Service-Learning Conference March 24-27, 2010, San Jose Convention Center, San Jose, CA www.nylc.org/conference Higher Education and the Greater Good: Meeting the Challenges of the 21st Century The New England Campus Compact Regional Conference April 13-14, 2010, University of Vermont, Burlington, VT www.vtcampuscompact.org
Volunteer and Service-Learning Center Old Cafeteria Complex 252.328.2735 (phone) 252.328.0139 (fax) www.ecu.edu/vslc • email@example.com Judy Baker, Institutional and Community Development Consultant Kimberly Caudle, AmeriCorps*VISTA Jessica Gagne Cloutier, Service-Learning Coordinator Michael Loeffelman, Volunteer Coordinator Shawn Moore, Community Partner Coordinator
Happy Holidays Winter Edition 2009