About Business 200 and Service Learning

Service learning is an approach to teaching that brings you out of the classroom to perform meaningful community service, combined with instruction and reflection.

Photo of students from accounting club raking leaves

By adding real-world service experience to your degree, you learn the value of civic responsibility and strengthen the community.


Preparing Undergraduates for the Business World

BUSN 200's program of service learning will teach you about the partnerships that must exist between businesses and communities to keep them both healthy.

You'll put your business education into practice and put your unique and valuable skills to work for worthy organizations in your community.

And you'll learn about the unique challenges of running a nonprofit and discover new possible career directions that align your values with your ambitions.

The spirit of service that you'll develop in BUSN 200 will stay with you for the rest of your life. The semester you'll spend in service and reflection will bring you joy and meaning in the best tradition of Catholic social teaching.


Catholic Social Teaching

This body of doctrine developed by the Catholic Church on matters of poverty and wealth, economics, social organization and the role of the state has as strong influence on BUSN 200. See some of our partner organizations that highlight the themes of Catholic social teaching.

Life and Dignity of the Human Person

Open Arms Minnesota is the only nonprofit organization in Minnesota that prepares and delivers free meals specifically tailored to meet the nutrition needs of individuals living with serious and life-threatening diseases.

In support of a theology class traveling to South Africa with Open Arms, one group of business students raised money to provide food for more than 300 families affected by the AIDS crisis. By purchasing food locally upon their arrival in South Africa, the money also provided economic stimulation to the region.

Call to Family, Community and Participation

Project for Pride in Living works with lower-income individuals and families throughout the Twin Cities metro area to achieve greater self-sufficiency through housing, employment training, education and support services.

Numerous BUSN 200 students have completed their service in partnership with PPL. Several students have assisted with housing; others with employment training; and still others by working with children who are living in PPL communities. Additionally, one accounting student provided assistance with budgeting and financial support to PPL.

Rights and Responsibilities

Twin Cities RISE! provides employers with skilled workers — primarily men from communities of color in the Twin Cities area — by training under- and unemployed adults for skilled jobs that pay a living wage of at least $20,000 annually.

A receipt of the BUSN 200 Gibney Award, Twin Cities RISE! has been the service site of many BUSN 200 students interested in developing their human resources management skills. These students have worked with Twin Cities RISE! clients in developing interview skills, enhancing their résumés and establishing an inner sense of empowerment to ensure their greater success in the workplace.

Options for the Poor and Vulnerable

Listening House is a day/evening shelter and community resource center in St. Paul that provides hospitality, practical assistance and counsel to people who are homeless, disadvantaged or lonely. People in transition or experiencing a crisis often feel isolated and need to feel part of something. Listening House is a place anyone can belong.

Each year a group of St. Thomas business students organizes a silent auction to raise funds for the shelter. The student-run auction provides enough funds to keep the shelter open for approximately one month. Since 1999, more than 400 students have raised over $300,000 for this worthy organization.

The Dignity of Work and the Rights of Workers

AccountAbility Minnesota is dedicated to providing high- quality tax preparation and related financial services to individuals and families of limited means by leveraging volunteer resources and advising and assisting others to provide similar services in their communities.

A large number of accounting students make meaningful use of their acquired classroom knowledge by serving with AccountAbility Minnesota. Students complete tax returns for low-income families, helping many families receive returns that as much as double their annual incomes.

Solidarity

Friends of the Orphans is dedicated to improving the lives of orphaned, abandoned and disadvantaged children through the support of the Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos (NPH, Spanish for "Our Little Brothers and Sisters") network of orphanages in Latin America and the Caribbean.

Several students have completed their service with Friends of the Orphans by assisting with fundraising and by providing organizational support. Located on Marshall Avenue, an easy walk from the St. Paul campus, this organization does amazing work in many international locations. Because of its international focus, many BUSN 200 students enjoy this partnership because they know their service is making a different in many parts of the world. Friends of the Orphans is also a recipient of the BUSN 200 Gibney Awards.

Care for God’s Creation

Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board is committed to permanently preserving, protecting, maintaining, improving and enhancing Minneapolis' natural resources, parkland and recreational opportunities for current and future generations.

BUSN 200 students have engaged in activities with the Parks and Recreation Board ranging from buckthorn removal, creation of walking trails, and facilitation of after-school activities in the parks for youth and coaching neighborhood sports teams.