Faculty Invited to Register Courses for Service-Learning Credit

The Office of Service-Learning and Civic Engagement invites faculty to register their summer and fall 2015 courses for service-learning credit. Service-learning presents students an opportunity to learn with work that enhances the common good. Faculty who are taking students off campus for experiential or service-based components are encouraged strongly to register their courses. The benefits for interested faculty include:

  • Guidance in building a service-learning course and providing liability assistance. Faculty may find a community partner through OSLCE or establish a partnership on their own behalf. Those seeking support finding organizations will discover UST is connected to both local and global partnerships.
  • Finding new avenues for research and publication. Designated courses have access to budgetary and logistical support including pre- and post-experience surveys for assessment. Such assessment data may be useful when publishing an article on this potentially transformative pedagogy, thereby serving faculty research agendas.
  • Revitalizing your teaching through this exciting pedagogy, which fosters reciprocal learning between students and faculty.
  • Develop students’ civic and leadership skills by offering an opportunity to put the theory they learn in their course into practice. Through hands-on experience, students increase their understanding of the topic and develop critical-thinking and problem-solving skills.
  • Having your course highlighted on OSLCE’s website and social media. A synopsis of your course is featured along with the opportunity for a student to blog about his/her experience working in the community.
  • Being eligible to be considered for the annual service-learning faculty award and Minnesota Campus Compact Presidents’ Award.

The steps to designate courses for service-learning are the following:

  1. Fill out the course designation form here.
  2. Email syllabi to the Office of Service-Learning and Civic Engagement at servicelearn@stthomas.edu.

Please note that courses must meet all the criteria below to be given the service-learning designation:

  • The service-learning component is integrated into the course content and learning objectives.
  • Opportunities for structured reflection (written, verbal or other) are incorporated in the course.
  • Service-learning activities are meaningful, relevant and intentionally linked to academic content.
  • The service-learning component benefits the common good and raises issues of social responsibility.
  • Both the community partner and the university benefit from the relationship.
  • All students are required to participate in the service-learning experience.

For classes to be designated officially as service-learning, faculty must register with the Office of Service-Learning and Civic Engagement no later than Thursday, April 2. Upon approval by the Service-Learning Curriculum Committee, the registrar’s office will designate the course on students’ transcripts.

For further information or questions, please visit our website or contact OSLCE at servicelearn@stthomas.edu or (651) 962-5380.

Call for Papers for Student Poster Session

The Office of Service-Learning & Civic Engagement (OSLCE) invites students to submit an abstract for the Service-Learning Student Poster Session, which will share students’ experiences on their service-learning course and the community partner(s) they worked with. Abstracts can be submitted by individuals, groups, or by a class. Co-authoring with the community partner is encouraged. The deadline for abstract submissions is Tuesday, March 17. The poster session will be held alongside the Service-Learning Awards Reception on Tuesday, May 12 from 4-6:30pm.


The abstract should be a one page summary (maximum) and should follow these guidelines:

Information about the community partner

Issues addressed by the community partner and the work performed by the UST student(s).

The impact of the service performed

Who benefitted from the service? What were the outcomes? How did the experience impact you and the greater community?

Learning objectives

  • Academic: Connection to program or course content
  • Civic: Understanding of community need
  • Self: Awareness of individual change or connection to career, professional or personal goals


To be considered for the poster session, abstracts must be received by Tuesday, March 17. Abstracts can be emailed to servicelearn@stthomas.edu.

Questions? Contact OSLCE at 651-962-5380 or stop by Aquinas Hall 313.

Piper Kerman Coming to UST!

Piper Kerman, author of Orange is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison, will be speaking at St. Thomas on Wednesday, March 25th! Come and hear her speak about her book and her experiences.

More details will be available soon. For more information about the J-Term Book Club, visit Student Diversity & Inclusion Services website.


Interested in learning how to give back?

Community Partner, Minnesota Department of Corrections (MnCoSA), will also be there to share opportunities on how to get involved with restorative justive and support circles for past offenders.

Join us for the Upcoming Faculty Workshop on Service-Learning

We will be holding a workshop for faculty to learn more about service-learning and the impacts it has on the classroom and students. Dr. Kimberly Vrudny, from Theology, will be holding a three-day workshop in May.

When: Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, May 26-28th from 9am-12pm

Where: McNeely Hall 315 (conference room)

Please RSVP to servicelearn@stthomas.edu to reserve your spot.

Companion Now Available

Spring Companion 2014 is now ready to read!  Please feel free to browse our archives for previous editions of the Companion newsletter.