Service-learning is "a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility and strengthen communities" (National Service-Learning Clearinghouse). These are powerful, transformative experiences which have been shown to increase intercultural sensitivity and civic engagement even after graduation. "In a study of more than twenty thousand students...Astin et al. explain that 'service-learning is effective in part because it facilitates four types of outcomes: increased sense of personal efficacy, an increased awareness of the world, an increased awareness of one's personal values, and increased engagement in the classroom experience.'" (Brownell & Swaner, Five High Impact Practices. AAC&U, 2009)
Augustana is committed to offering many service-learning opportunities. The Service-learning Office works with faculty, students and community members to develop these opportunities within numerous Augustana courses, whether the community served is local or international. For example, students in our service-learning classes have partnered with area schools, worked in food pantries, helped at a shelter for homeless teens, tutored at an after school program, provided tax assistance at a community center, and offered medical assistance to villages in Nicaragua. The possibilities are endless, and the rewards are incredible!
For Community Partners-
If you would like to know more about service-learning, please contact Dr. Ellen Hay: firstname.lastname@example.org or (309) 794-8614