FALL | 2016 — SECOND EDITION
TRANSITIONS IN GLOBAL AND LOCAL ENGAGEMENT
by Camille George and Kimberly Vrudny
Just in case anyone missed their letter in the fall COMPANION, the Associate Vice-Provost for Global and Local Engagement, Camille George, and Director of Community Engagement, Kimberly Vrudny, update the campus community on the exciting transitions underway in global and local engagement as a result of the strategic planning process.
OFFICE OF COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT ANNOUNCES NEW INITIATIVE:
"CLASSROOMS WITHOUT BORDERS"
The Office of Community Engagement announces the result of its year-long strategic planning effort. "Classrooms Without Borders" aspires to enroll students in meaningful and mutually recriprocal partnerships with organizations in the community that are: fostering interreligious understanding, alleviating poverty and hunger, establishing food security, securing environmental sustainability, improving public health, ensuring equitable access to education, dismantling racism, promoting women's equality, advancing justice and peace, and caring for elders and people living with disabilities. The program envisions appointing "Engaged Scholars" for each theme. These faculty would receive course release time and a stipend to establish community partnerships, recruit faculty participation, train faculty in best practices of engagement, design an orientation for students, work with faculty to design effective reflection exercises, and assess each partnership at the end of each semester. Watch the video for more information; viewers are invited to pause the video as they watch in order to read more about each theme-based initiative.
In 2016, a team of 14 first-generation students of color from The University of St. Thomas and Cristo Rey Jesuit High School-Twin Cities, along with their six faculty and staff mentors, formed a collaboration. Together, and thanks to a generous grant from Youthprise and Minnesota Campus Compact, they became researchers. Adopting a model of Youth Participatory Action Research (YPAR), they tackled questions of college access and success for first-generation college students with the goal of making positive change for first-generation students both here in Minnesota and across the country. Visit the project's webpage to learn more.
The middle and high school students at Ke Kula Ni'ihau O' Kekaha, the school that partners with St. Thomas during the J-term course, Hawai'i: Multicultural Communication in Diverse Organizations, have created a story about this unique partnership that aired recently on PBS - Hawaii. It is a compilation of time St. Thomas students spent with them in 2014 and 2016. The school received the University of St. Thomas Community Engagement Partner Award in 2014. Communication and Journalism faculty Debra Petersen and Tim Scully look forward to having another great experience with them in January 2017.
EVENTS IN COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
(please pre-register when indicated using the links provided)
Tuesday, December 6, 3:00 - 4:30 p.m., in North Woulfe
With the anticipated opening of the Center for the Common Good, it is an exciting time for community engagement at St. Thomas.
The Office of Community Engagement would like to invite you to a "casual conversation" about all the transitions underway, and to celebrate Camille George's and Kimberly Vrudny's leadership.
Please REGISTER so we can prepare for how many are coming.
EVENTS IN SUSTAINABILITY
Tuesday, Dec. 6, 12-1pm, MHC 204
Students will share their SCP fall project work through short, five-minute presentations. Lunch provided.
Here is the line-up of courses with components in service to the community. All of these courses have been officially designated through the Office of Community Engagement.
It's not too late to designate!
Apply for an "engaged" designation for courses currently underway.
To date, over 50 courses from all across the university have obtained the SUST designation. We hope you will add yours to the mix!
SAVE THE DATE(S)
May 1, 4:30 - 6:30 p.m., N. Woulfe
Watch for an announcement about the next introductory workshop.
* * *
This year, the COMPANION will be published only online.
Watch for announcements about the return of a print edition.