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We are here to awaken from the illusion of our separateness. -Thich Nhat Hanh

Loyola University Maryland invites students to


Hundreds of students participate in community service each year through the Center for Community Service and Justice. CCSJ offers a wide range of service opportunities, service-learning courses, and immersion programs from Baltimore to Florida, from Mexico to El Salvador. In addition to meeting peers who share their service interests, they will experience local communities first hand and broaden their understanding of themselves and their world. At Loyola, we hope that our students will come to embrace Loyola’s core values of community service, diversity, and justice, cultivating life-long habits of service in order to create a more just and equitable world.


IN BALTIMORE Loyola students have the opportunity to participate in a wide range of community service opportunities on a regular basis. CCSJ has developed rich partnerships with organizations and agencies throughout Baltimore. These collaborations ensure a productive, transformative experience not only for those who are clients or beneficiaries of the agencies, but also for those who engage in service. Through these relationships, students can join in the development and future success of these vital programs as volunteers and as members of the community. CCSJ service experiences follow the PARE model—a cycle of preparation, action, reflection, and evaluation. This model embeds the service experience in an educational context that challenges students to examine social justice issues and to explore ways they can respond as active, engaged citizens. This model offers a comprehensive process for personal growth including self-discovery, spirituality, and faith. While the model is an ideal way to connect service and education in any setting, it is most beneficial when students participate in service weekly over an extended period, and can truly witness their perspectives evolving over time.

Ambrose Center

LOCATION: Northwest


“‘Stop talking, sit down, keep your hands to yourself!’ I have only been at St. Ambrose Center for five minutes but I have already had to reprimand four kids. My words often go unheard. ‘Why did you just bite her? She was getting on your nerves? Not acceptable. Now I’m the meanest teacher ever?’ At the end of the day, I’m feeling slightly discouraged, wondering if these kids understand how much I care. “But then I hear groans and complaining. ‘What is it now?’ I yell. But I hear, ‘We don’t wanna leave, can we stay a little longer? I wanna go home with you.’ Suddenly it clicks. I remember why I do what I do. You see, some people might use words like ‘loud,’ ‘rude,’ ‘disrespectful,’ ‘violent,’ and ‘troublemakers’ to describe these kids. But, how would you act if society told you that you were not good enough and made you feel as if you had no voice? You would act out. You would be loud enough to make sure that someone noticed you. That

is what I see when I look at these kids. They are fighting to be heard, to be noticed, to make someone care.”

PROGRAM: Presence

for Christmas

LOCATION: Northeast


“Presence for Christmas allows participants to engage in the life of another child or family, temporarily

PROGRAM: Care-A-Van LOCATION: Downtown



“While I was volunteering on the Care-A-Van program, I asked a man who was experiencing homelessness what he would like to say to Loyola students. He replied: ‘We aren’t all like they think. I went to school. It’s hard out here.’ These are the words of our neighbors—of real people, like ourselves, who are educated, hardworking, faithful, and cold. “What I have learned through my experiences with community service is that I know very little of the true and gritty reality of cold streets and lonely suffering.

What I have learned . . . is to let those who know this reality to speak for themselves.”

transcending our own needs and attending to the needs of others.”

COMBINING CLASSROOM AND COMMUNITY Service-learning courses offer students the exciting opportunity to enhance their academic studies by engaging in community service as a part of their coursework. Service-learning fits well with almost any subject in Loyola course offerings. It puts a human face on learning, a face students will remember long after the course has ended. Through service-learning, students also learn about themselves, their community, and the world around them. Their courses, developed by Loyola faculty in collaboration with CCSJ’s office of service-learning, become additional venues for learning about diversity, social justice, and leadership.

“Baltimore became my classroom through service-learning.

I became engaged on a level I never thought possible. Teaching ESL to Latino men in the city gave me a personal connection with the Central American immigrants I was learning about in my Spanish courses and enriched my understanding of U.S. immigration policy in a way that no pamphlet, lecture, or reading ever could. Then, serving at the Parks and People Foundation immersed me in the environmental movement in Baltimore, while my ethics course provided me the philosophical and theoretical perspectives behind it. Service-learning always left me more engaged and enlightened on the subject matter and more aware and involved in my community.” LOYOLA STUDENT

“Esperanza Center’s ESL program is fortunate in the community partnership we share with Loyola through service-learning. The vibrant, well-run program provides students imbued with a perfect gentle spirit of openness, generosity, and willingness to embrace any challenge or task involving our immigrant population.

The blessings go both ways;

our ESL program serves Loyola students through intercultural exchange and real-life experience. Servicelearning is a gift and a great asset to all students, staff, and clients, enriching the lives of everyone involved.” COMMUNITY PARTNER

“Through service-learning, my students have helped promote justice, gained greater exposure to and appreciation for diversity, made strides toward critical understanding, and assumed positions of leadership in the interest of social responsibility. The promotion of

education for action

is nowhere more evident at Loyola than in the engaged scholarship of its servicelearning programs. Just as Ignatius celebrated ‘contemplatives in action,’ Loyola today promotes the engaged scholarship through its service-learning courses.” LOYOLA FACULTY MEMBER



CCSJ immersion programs offer transformative experiences with diverse populations and cultures in both domestic and international settings. Students spend a weekend to 10 days engaged in service and educational activities that provide a glimpse into the realities of their host community. This kind of immersion, coupled with daily reflection, raises awareness about social justice and community issues, and invigorates participants to return to Loyola better able to work for social change.

“Three times I have had the privilege to participate in Spring Break Outreach. The


combination of cultural immersion, direct service, and reflection taught me and changed me in ways I never thought possible. Every time I went on a trip, I was educated about a different area of the country, introduced to a new community that I would never have been able to meet otherwise, and encouraged to engage in critical analysis about the challenges that community faces. My preconceived notions about the people I encountered were proved wrong over and over, and people who normally live on the margins of our society became my teachers. SBO taught me and a myriad of other Loyola students that we CAN change our communities, our country, and our world.� SBO PARTICIPANT

S.O.S. S.B.O.



Encounter El Salvador

Looking across the border from Tijuana to San Diego – Project Mexico

Project Mexico

Being involved with Project Mexico solidified my

feeling that during service I wasn’t giving as much

to the people as they were giving to me. We were

there to be changed, not necessarily to change

them. Service is about understanding, not sympathy. PROJECT MEXICO PARTICIPANT

RAISING AWARENESS CCSJ is committed to working with and supporting partners in the community who promote the dignity of all people. Through service and outreach programs, students work with persons who are marginalized in some way—those in need of food, shelter, tutoring, and more. Hearing a real person’s story of injustice can influence a student in profound and often unexpected ways. The perspectives, assumptions, and prejudices of students can be challenged when they engage in service. Service and justice are inextricably linked, with questions of justice taking a broader, more systemic view. Our hope is that through service, students develop critical thinking skills and ask why structural injustice and inequality persist, and are motivated to work for social change.

“As the sun began to fade, we began to fall asleep on the ground in our sleeping bags. It was honestly much colder than I thought it would be. Sleeping there and talking with a man named Timothy broke down the barriers between them—people experiencing homelessness—and us—privileged students. I thought that I was pretty well versed on the issue of homelessness before attending the city-wide sleep out. However after actually sleeping outside as equals with the people that we serve, it broke down the last of the barriers in my mind between ‘us’ and ‘them.’” FAST AND SLEEP OUT PARTICIPANT



y dad grew up in the Philippines, working in the rice fields. When I was a kid, he told me stories about lunches of rice with salt and a tomato wrapped in banana leaves. Sometimes I romanticize the life of a farmer in the Philippines. However, I realize that the work is backbreaking. While he jokes that he joined the U.S. Navy because he wanted to buy a ’67 Camaro, I know that he did not want me to walk in knee-deep mud to plant and harvest rice. I grew up on a U.S. military base in Japan. When my father retired, we returned to the Philippines. After four years, political turmoil forced my family to move to the United States. We arrived in Baltimore with only eight boxes to start our new life. When I began at the local public school, I realized that, although I was raised on U.S. military bases and was an American citizen, many of my peers assumed I was an immigrant. I began to relate to the immigrant’s American Dream of working hard, becoming successful, and assimilating.


After high school, I was accepted at Loyola University Maryland. During my sophomore year, I attended a panel on immigration that changed my life. A speaker, Cynthia, shared her story about crossing the border with her family to escape poverty and violence in Guatemala. Our histories were so similar. However, because she was undocumented, our lives could not have been more different. Cynthia worked menial jobs to pay for tuition at a local community college, while I enjoyed the privilege of a private university education. She encouraged us to advocate for legislation called the DREAM Act which would allow undocumented students who graduated from public high schools to receive in-state university tuition. After the panel, I introduced myself. Cynthia recognized me—we had gone to the same high school. Before saying goodbye, I promised, “I will fight for this.” I don’t know why I said those words that night but it has made all the difference in my time at Loyola. Through CCSJ’s service and advocacy opportunities, I’ve shared our stories with legislators locally and in Washington, D.C. I spent a summer with an immigrant rights organization in Los Angeles. I protested against a car wash that terrorized and forced undocumented employees to work for nearly nothing. I learned that the only thing that separates me from the car washers is a paper that says I am a U.S. citizen. Being an advocate is not easy. It can take years, even decades, to see results. But I’ve seen change happen. Two years after I protested against the car wash, a California court awarded an undocumented worker $80,000 in back pay. This year, the DREAM Act progressed in Maryland. I find strength in knowing that I speak on behalf of thousands of people who are silenced by the fear of deportation. I have learned that my voice, added to many others, can create true and lasting change.

FAITH AND JUSTICE Working among people who are marginalized inevitably raises life questions. All world religions offer rich resources for addressing these questions. The principles of Catholic Social Teaching, which have informed CCSJ’s approach to service and justice, are some of these resources. Through regular opportunities for guided reflection, people and students of all faiths are invited to grapple with these questions and enjoy the support of fellow students and staff. These opportunities help students grow morally, spiritually, and intellectually through their local and global service, so they can be prepared to take action for a more just and equitable world.


“The St. Ambrose kids have made me grow and have had an incredible impact on my life and my faith. Yes, they challenge me and often push me to my limits. But, I love those kids, no matter what. I know that I need them just as much as they need me.

God transforms us when we serve and give, often out of our own limitations. I truly believe that love conquers the greatest divides of hatred, racism, greed, sexism, and classism.” LOYOLA STUDENT

ue words of the tr I reflect on the s. live on the street ho w e os th s, rt expe let the reality of They teach us to nd essness wrap arou el m ho d an r ge hun ging r hearts, challen our minds and ou le feel uncomfortab to us g in ir sp in and stice. ate for God’s ju and feel passion r of the lives of ou y it al re e th el To fe ping s sitting and slee neighbors, person own r reality be our ei th t le o T e. id outs our own. reality. For it is LOYOLA STUDENT


At Loyola, our goal of further developing “men and women for and with others” includes helping students to incorporate service into their lives after graduation. Some choose to work in a non-profit agency, some may accept a full-time job in their field and integrate service into their lives in other ways, and others might consider spending a year or two in a full-time service program. All of these paths offer a remarkable chance to make a real difference in other people’s lives, as well as a way to gain knowledge and experience that will be valuable in achieving personal and professional goals.

DOMESTIC Baltimore Philadelphia Washington, D.C. Chicago New Orleans Los Angeles New York City Las Vegas Denver Montana Alaska Arizona Missouri Mississippi Oregon Ohio

“Ever since my first Spring Break Outreach trip to Fries, Va., I knew I wanted to do a year of service after graduation. I was led specifically to Jesuit Volunteer Corps because of my strong ties to Ignatian spirituality; it is the basis of my work for justice. I wanted a location where I would never live otherwise, and I was interested in the focus that the Northwest region put on environmental sustainability. I was led to Bethel, Alaska, and couldn’t be happier. I am living in a rural Alaskan town, a place that could not be more different from where I grew up, and I absolutely love it. My clients are almost entirely Yup’ik, and I have had a completely cross-cultural experience. I work with parents who have had their children taken into state custody, and try to empower them to adequately address the issues of alcohol abuse, domestic violence, and neglect that brought their children into custody, thus reuniting their families. My clients are people who are strong and resilient, despite having all the odds stacked against them.

They have had—and will continue to have— an extremely profound effect on me.” Maura Toomb, ’08, completed a year of service with Jesuit Volunteer Corps as a client advocate at the Alaska Public Defender Agency.

INTERNATIONAL Marshall Islands Bolivia France El Salvador India Thailand Uganda Tanzania South Africa Sudan Venezuela Chile China Japan Borneo

From: Michael Ferrara Sent: Tuesday, March 30, 3:24 PM Subject: Thank You! To the fine folks at CCSJ, I hope all is well! I was just reminiscing about my experience and thought I would send a long overdue letter of gratitude. I am going on my fifth year teaching kindergarten at a charter school in Bushwick, Brooklyn. I would never have followed an interest in education if not for the support and guidance that I received from everyone in CCSJ. I know that I was awfully young and naive at the time, but you helped me recognize inequality in the world and encouraged me to do my part to change it. As time goes on and students graduate, it may be difficult for you to see the lasting effects of your work. I want you to know that your love and encouragement has motivated and inspired me to become the person that I am today. Please keep in touch with your stories and updates. And hopefully we can reconnect over coffee as the summer approaches. All the best, Mike Ferrara


OR ...

Why hunger? Why homelessness? Why illiteracy? Why unemployment?

We serve because we need to … -

Break the cycle of poverty Connect with one another Reconcile our differences Live in solidarity with those most in need Transcend and broaden our understanding of different viewpoints Live not as individuals but as members of a community See the faces of our sisters and brothers as the face of God Respond to the environmental dangers which threaten our planet Seek peace in a fractured world

Rev. Timothy Brown, S.J. Co-founder, Center for Community Service and Justice


OR ...

Why inequality? Why oppression? Why violence? Why marginalization?

heart “WHEN THE HEART IS TOUCHED BY DIRECT EXPERIENCE, THE mind MIND MAY BE CHALLENGED TO CHANGE.” Rev. Peter-Hans Kolvenbach, S.J., Superior General of the Society of Jesus, 1983-2008 Quote excerpted from, “Justice in Jesuit Higher Education,” his October 2000 address at Santa Clara University. Read the full address at:

We seek justice because we need to ... -

Recognize and promote the innate dignity of every child, woman, and man Be inclusive of all people Learn from and support one another Assure that resources are distributed equitably Value the participation of every person Care about and collaborate with one another Make opportunities accessible to all Protect and preserve our environment Promote peace Assure that every person feels safe Recognize God’s image in the face of our sisters and brothers

Sr. Catherine “Missy” Gugerty, SSND Director, Center for Community Service and Justice

The Center for Community Service and Justice strives to incorporate environmentally responsible practices to ensure a sustainable future for all. FSC® printing standards guarantee that environmentally friendly practices govern every step of the printing process—from selecting the trees, to producing the paper, to running the printing presses.

Center for Community Service and Justice Humanities Center 142 4501 N. Charles St. Baltimore, Md. 21210-2699 Phone (410) 617-2380 Fax: (410) 617-5092


CCSJ Handbook  

Introduction to Center of Community Service and Justice at Loyola University Maryland

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