Service-learning means using what you learn in the classroom to solve real-life problems in your community in a way that helps both you and the community. Though service-learning, you not only learn the practical applications of your studies, you become an actively contributing citizen and community member through the service you perform.
Service-learning can involve a group of students, a classroom or an entire school. Students build character and become active participants as they work with others in their school and community to create service projects in areas such as education, public safety, and the environment.
Here are three examples of service-learning chosen from the UW Colleges curriculum:
GEO 123 Weather & Climate - Students create a lesson plan of fun activities about various atmospheric concepts and then go to a local Boys & Girls Clubs After School Program and do the activities with the youth.
POL 231 Sex, Power and Public Policy - Students are placed within community agencies that deal primarily with women’s issues. Their experiences are reflected on in groups that examine the issues and relationships from each site or agency and analyze them in a local, regional and/or state context.
SOC 101 Introduction to Sociology - Pairs of students are assigned to participate in one activity of about two hours at a local senior center where they help guide life-enhancement activities for resident. The experience not only helps the residents, but leads the students to understand and explore stereotypes about the elderly and the dynamics of inter-generational interaction
Service-learning can take many forms, including internships, and can be applied in a variety of situations depending on the needs of the student and the partnering organization or community. Service-learning can have a tremendous impact on students' growth, and our community partners enjoy and appreciate the knowledge our students can being to their organizations.
UW Colleges Contact
Dr. Michael C. Jurmu
UW Colleges Service-Learning Coordinator
Associate Professor of Geography and Geology, UW-Fond du Lac
Dr. Michael C. Jurmu