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Service-Learning|Service, Leadership & Community Engagement

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About Service-Learning:

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Service-Learning is a credit-based education experience in which students participate in an organized service activity that meets identified community needs, and students reflect on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation for the discipline, and an enhanced sense of civic responsibility.

Service-Learning is more than simply adding community service to the classroom. It's about connecting academic content to real-world issues through partnerships with local organizations. Service-Learning energizes students and faculty, making a dynamic and engaging learning environment.

Key Components of Service-Learning: 

  1. Connecting Service with Learning: Service must be meaningful and be academically rigorous.
  2. Reflection: This process ranges from personal reflection about interests, beliefs, knowledge, and skills to assessing the problem, evaluating progress, and measuring the impact of service on the service site.
  3. Reciprocity: The student gains a sense of empathy, connection, and mission from the people with whom he or she is serving and working.
  4. Critical Thinking: The student is placed in situations that facilitate reflective and analytical thinking, as well as the development of creative and effective problem-solving skills.
  5. Social Responsibility: The student is placed into a multicultural environment that expands the student's compassion, civic awareness, and desire to be civically engaged.
  6. Experiential Learning: Direct experience and hands-on learning help the student learn to take initiative, assume responsibility, and become self-sufficient, as well as improve deliberative, collaborative, and leadership skills. The Service-Learning experience helps the student grow in knowledge, skills, and awareness that will prove useful in future career(s), in family life, and in involvement in the Community. (Schoenfeld, 2004)
*Schoenfeld, R.M. (2004) Service-learning: Guide & journal. Higher education edition. Seattle, WA: Guide & Journal Publications.

Apply for Service-Learning Mini-Grant:

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SLCE is proud to support faculty initiatives to increase service opportunities for students.

The Service, Leadership, and Community Engagement (SLCE) Office is pleased to announce the availability of Service-Learning Mini-Grant Awards. These grants, typically between $250 and $750, are available to fund the implementation of new Service-Learning projects or the improvement of established projects in existing courses. Grants will be awarded to faculty on a competitive basis according to the selection criteria.

The Service-Learning Mini-Grants seek to encourage opportunities for active student experiences that enhance classroom learning through addressing community needs.

FACULTY - Apply for supportive funds here.

About the Engaged Faculty Institute:

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SLCE is affiliated with the Colorado Campus Compact who provide training and support for faculty who are currently, or hope to, implement service learning into their curriculum. One example of this support is the annual Engaged Faculty Institute (EFI).

The Engaged Faculty Institute (EFI) training program provides an opportunity for cohorts of faculty and instructors to engage in dialogue about student-centered, experiential education that enhances classroom learning while addressing community needs. The seminar series is designed to introduce and provide best practices for service learning, and to guide participants as they integrate it into their classroom curriculum and pedagogy. Foundational information on service learning is provided through discussion, reading, and guest speakers. Participants develop or modify a syllabus for one (or more) of their courses in a way that integrates principles and best practices of service learning. To date, over 80 faculty from 11 member institutions have participated in the EFI.

Contact Us:

For additional information contact Erin Olsen in the SLCE Office at: or (307) 766-6871.


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