A publication of the Volunteer and Service-Learning Center
What’s New in the VSLC? The Volunteer and Service-Learning Center will be busy with three major projects during spring semester 2009. First, we will co-sponsor the 6th annual East Carolina University Conference on Service-Learning with the University ServiceLearning Advisory Committee. The conference is scheduled for February 19, 2009 in Mendenhall Student Center with keynote speaker Dr. Garry Hesser. Hesser is the 1997 winner of the Thomas Ehrlich Award for Leadership in Service-Learning, and the 2004 Minnesota Professor of the Year. He teaches sociology at Augsburg College. Dr. Hesser will address linking research on effective teaching and learning to service-learning. More information will be available soon at www.ecu.edu/vslc Second, the Center’s Web site will undergo a major reconstrution. The new Web site will provide ECU faculty, staff, and students with resources related to both volunteerism and service-learning in a user-friendly, interactive environment. You’ll be able to view an ongoing list of requests from community partners, share best practices on a service-learning blog, access new VSLC service-learning forms and toolkits, and submit ideas for future workshops and conferences. Finally, the Center will finalize plans to open a Campus Kitchen in fall 2009. The ECU Campus Kitchen will recycle unserved food from dining halls, local restaurants, and stores and use that food to prepare meals for those in need in our community. Please contact the VSLC about future servicelearning projects with the ECU Campus Kitchen.
Community Partner Spotlight North Carolina Migrant Education Program The mission of the North Carolina Migrant Education Program (NC MEP) is to help migrant students and youth meet high academic challenges by overcoming obstacles created by frequent moves, educational disruption, cultural and language differences, and health related problems. Locally-based migrant education programs support their mission by identifying and recruiting migrant students, providing high quality supplemental and support services, fostering coordination among schools, agencies, organizations and businesses to assist migrant families, and collaborating with other states to enhance the continuity of education for migrant students. In 2008, the Lenoir County Migrant Education Program (LC MEP) became a registered community partner with the Volunteer and Service-Learning Center. Melissa Bailey, Lead Recruiter for LC MEP, expressed needs varying from non perishable food drives, development of simple, fast-paced ESL curriculums for use in 3 local migrant camps, assistance with basic health screenings, data collection, and documentation education for migrant families. Faculty interested in partnering with LC MEP should contact the Volunteer and Service-Learning Center. Next Spotlight: Girl Scouts-North Carolina Coastal Pines
ECU Faculty Spotlight Hunt McKinnon Interior Design and Merchandising
Hot Topics Publications of Interest Quarterly Reflection Activity
Calls for Proposals Grants & Funding Opportunities Conferences & Events
East Carolina University
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“There are two educations: one should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live.” -James Truslow Adams
Since 1999, graduating seniors enrolled in IDSN-4600 have helped communities like Plymouth, Washington, Bath, Greenville, Rocky Mount and Tarboro find innovative ways to restore and utilize landmark buildings that have fallen into disrepair. Hunt McKinnon, AIA, NCARB, NCIDQ , Assistant Professor in the Department of Interior Design and Merchandising, uses the course to educate students about their civic responsibilities as designers. Their most recent project included a partnership with the Marine Corps for a Wounded Warriors barracks at Camp Lejeune. Why do you choose to utilize s-l in your classroom? What are the academic benefits to your students? The students are more enthusiastic about their work when they know they will have real clients with real needs. They work harder and they seem to feel that the contribution that they are making to their client groups are meaningful to both parties. They learn what it will be like to be in the service of the community and client and how to mediate between the competing objectives of the “overall” client group. They also learn what it is like present their work in an understandable way. How do you identify design needs within the community? Several years ago we depended on the Regional Development Institute to match us up with projects. For the last two years clients have come to us due to the good work the students have done in the past. Their reputation is now established as contributors to the clients who seek us out in defining and visualizing what might be possible What best practices would you share with faculty new to s-l? Let me outline some of the lessons learned: 1) Charge the client for your work. The students need the money to help with the art supplies that will be used in the client’s service and the clients take you more seriously when they pay for the work product. We have never had a client that said that they did not “get their money’s worth”. 2) Have frequent presentations. Generally we present every three weeks so there is a clear progression in the work and our clients can see the project develop during the semester. It is important to make sure the criteria for success and the evaluation of the completed work is clear to both the student and the client. This is a parallel effort to the project definition and the drawings and models that the students present as responses to the stated needs of our client group and the community in which the , mostly renovation, projects will be built. 3) Make sure the students understand that they are the service providers and not the clients. In reality the students are both the client and the service provider; however, when they realize they are working for the benefit of someone else the whole climate of the studio changes. The students become less “needy” and more professional in their work. They require clear definition of the work to be done, but they do not require some of the more unfortunate aspects of students who see themselves as a consumer of an academic service. I see the difference because I teach a history class where the students sometimes see me as a purveyor of information and a vendor of grades. The service learning studios offer a role model that elevates the discussion about what designers do in our culture and how they must be responsible for offering a service not expecting a service to be provided to them. The service of education is provided to the student in a subtle format of community based design 4) Summarize, summarize, summarize. I find myself constantly telling the students where they are in the process, and what is expected of them, and how and why they were successful in their presentations or in their plan development. I am willing to manage the process of their development as designers, so this is a simulation of the work world in which they will soon have to demonstrate their abilities. How do you motivate your students to engage wholly in the s-l component? This has never been a problem. The students generally prefer actual design projects to artificial studio work. They mention that they enjoy the interaction with their client group and walking through the building they will soon be redesigning. They motivate each other as they work in teams to accomplish the real work of a designer- to offer viable alternatives to people to invest in and to enjoy.
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Publications of Interest
“How can I identify local community needs and partnerships?”
The Volunteer and Service-Learning Center (VSLC) works to maintain more than 125 partnerships with non profit, government and human service agencies across eastern North Carolina. These community partners have a demonstrated need, and must sign a Memorandum of Understanding and submit to regular site visits by VSLC staff to ensure the safety of university and community constituents. Most of these community partners are listed in the Service Opportunities Guide available from the VSLC. Requests from community partners are submitted to the VSLC throughout the year, both formally and informally. Requests include everything from cell phone drives, marketing materials, videos, home-grown databases, ESL tutors, mentors, bereivement materials, construction and design needs, animal care, grant writing and more. The VSLC maintains a record of these requests, helps connect community partners to relevant and interested university parties, helps manage communication and evaluation of partnerships, facilitates campus visits by community partners, and keeps our partners aware of university policies and procedures that may impact their relationships. Faculty interested in identifying partnerships for service-learning courses are encouraged to contact the VSLC. Our staff is happy to support you in finding a safe, reliable, course appropriate partnership.
Prior to the start of service, it is helpful to prepare students for the experience(s) they will have in the community. In addition to logistical directions, preparation should include guidance regarding ethical decision making, etiquette and responsibility. The following scenario and reflective framework can be adapted for relevance to most community organizations, and can guide students through most dilemma’s related to their service. Ask students to read the scenario, and respond appropriately. This can be done as a class, or as an individual assignment. A computer information course with a servicelearning component has students install programs on the computers of a nonprofit community service agency. While installing a program, a student discovers information about a family member stored on the computers. This is sensitive information about a health condition of the family member, and the student is certain that no one in the family is aware of this information. Since the health condition is
Stevens, D. (2009) Journal Keeping: How to Use Reflective Journals for Effective Teaching and Learning, Professional Insight & Positive Change. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, LLC. Available in March 2009...
Butin, D. (2009) Rethinking Service Learning: Embracing the Scholarship of Engagement within Higher Education. Sterling, VA: Stylus Publishing, LLC. Available now...
Rimmerman, C. (2008) Service-Learning and the Liberal Arts: How and Why It Works. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books.
potentially contagious, the student is conflicted about his responsibility to keep his family safe, and his responsibility to maintain the confidentiality of the information he garners through his work as a computer specialist. 1) Identify the ethical dilemma. 2) Why is it an ethical dilemma? 3) Identify and list the information you think would be helpful in making a decision. 4) List at least three possible solutions to this dilemma. 5) Which of the proposed solutions would you choose? 6) Why would you choose this solution? 7) How would you evaluate whether this is a good solution?
Quarterly Reflection Activity
Chapdelaine, A., Ruiz, A., Warchal, J. & Wells, C. (2005). Service-Learning Code of Ethics. Bolton, MA: Anker Publishing Company, Inc.
Available in April 2009...
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Calls for Proposals
Grants and Funding Opportunities
Pathways of Engagement: Connecting Civic Purpose to Learning and Research: Locally & Globally - Call for Proposals Discuss the scholarship of outreach and engagement with colleagues from around the country.
The Spencer Foundation announces a grants program to support research about how and why individuals and groups become committed to civic action. This program of work is titled, the Initiative on Civic Learning and Civic Action, to highlight keen interest in learning and action and in the relationships between them. Grants will range from less than $40,000 to $500,000.
Presentation Options: • Oral presentations • Panel sessions • Posters All proposals must be submitted online and are due by February 25, 2009. The submission system is user-friendly and allows for providing information for multiple co-presenters. To submit a proposal go to: www.uwex.edu/ics/nosc2009.
A full description of the grant and grant guidelines is available at: http://www.spencer.org/content.cfm/civic-learningand-civic-action-more-info
Conferences and Events MLK Day of Service January 19, 2009, East Carolina University, Sponsored by the VSLC More information TBA: http://www.ecu.edu/vslc
Mark Your Calendars! 6th Annual ECU Conference on Service-Learning
2009 P.A.C.E. (Pathways to Achieving Civic Engagement) Conference February 11, 2009, Elon University, Elon, NC http://org.elon.edu/nccc/events/slc.html Registration Deadline: January 23, 2009 2009 Gulf-South Summit March 25-27, 2009, Baton Rouge, LA http://www.lsu.edu/summit09 Registration Deadline: February 2, 2009
February 19, 2009 Featuring Dr. Garry Hesser More information available soon at: www.ecu.edu/vslc
The 5th Annual Symposium on Service-Learning & Civic Engagement June 11, 2009, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, NC www.wcu.edu/9818.asp Proposal Submission Deadline: March 20, 2009 Registration Deadline: May 8, 2009
Volunteer and Service-Learning Center Old Cafeteria Complex 252.328.2735 (phone) 252.328.0139 (fax) www.ecu.edu/vslc • firstname.lastname@example.org Shawn Moore, Community Partner Coordinator Jessica Gagne Cloutier, Service-Learning Coordinator Judy Baker, Institutional and Community Development Consultant Jennifer Bergman, AmeriCorps*Vista Allison Stephens, ECU READS Coordinator
Winter Edition 2009