SPRING | 2016



As my first year as the AVP of Global & Local Engagement comes to an end, I feel that our efforts to engage students, faculty, staff, and alumni with off-campus experiential learning through mutually beneficial partnerships is gaining momentum. I have been fortunate to have so many passionate and competent colleagues that have stepped forward to create and facilitate opportunities to enrich our intellectual inquiry beyond the borders of the classroom. We are partnering with communities in the Twin Cities to improve access to education, expand food security, magnify civic engagement, and spur innovation. We are partnering with two municipalities to bring together students and faculty from multiple disciplines to address the complex challenges of sustainability. We are creating new study abroad opportunities that will broaden our global perspectives, encourage cultural exchanges, and pioneer new international projects.

As a center, we will set a course for the University to truly work to advance the common good and to create a legacy of collaboration that will reach future generations. We are in a position to innovate and enable bold ideas to improve our collective well-being through education, research, training, service, seminars, and workshops. We are committed to the exploration of diverse off-campus offerings that will provide firsthand experiences and inspire all of us to do our best. The center is dedicated to put the appropriate infrastructure in place so that we can engage the community and the world through best practices. We aim to continue UST’s long and rich tradition of outreach and collaboration to address social, political, technical, scientific and cultural issues that are important to our region and the world.

I would like to invite everyone to join our dynamic network to transform our mission into programs that expand our students’ skill sets, our faculty’s reach, and our staff’s impact to tackle the big problems around us.

Let us all work together,

Camille George
AVP Global & Local Engagement


by Kimberly Vrudny


The director describes new initiatives of the Office of Community Engagement and invites your participation.

by Elise Amel


The Sustainable Communities Partnership with Delano, Elk River, and the Mississippi Watershed are kicking off this semester. Read more about how sustainability is being infused throughout the curriculum at the University of St. Thomas.

by Adam Kay


The Ashoka Exchange in New Orleans, Louisiana, is designed to help campuses become centers of social impact and innovation. Eight members of the UST community traveled to Tulane University to participate in this year's exchange.

by Lisa Kiesel, Carey Winkler, Katharine Hill, and Jessica Toft


The School of Social Work is committed to promoting well-being for disenfranchised groups. In this article, practitioners outline Social Work initiatives that represent the ways in which the School endeavors to encourage students to become engaged in their larger communities to advance the common good.




by Edward Ulrich and Elaine MacMillan

In January, Ted Ulrich and Elaine MacMillan were conducting Theo. 424: Christianity and World Religions in Hawai'i. Here, they provide an overview of the course as well as the community engagement projects the students conducted.



by Meg Wilkes Karraker



by Carol Bruess


St. Thomas students, in collaboration with Cristo Rey students, are researching equitable access to education with funding from Minnesota Campus Compact and Youthprise.




March 8, 7:00 p.m., JRC 126

South African Truth and Reconciliation Commissioner will speak on Art and Reconciliation.
Read the newsroom article about this special event.


April 20, 3:00-4:30 p.m., Library Leather Room
Dr. Paul Farmer, Ph.D., M.D., will be speaking at the University of Minnesota on April 30, 2016. Farmer is a physician, medical anthropologist, and founder of Partners in Health, which has a preferential option for the poor in healthcare. Pulitzer prize winning author, Tracy Kidder, wrote Mountains Beyond Mountains about Paul Farmer. In preparation for Farmer's visit, fifteen faculty will read selections from his works in advance of his lecture. Sign-up for this exciting opportunity by contacting Kelly Sardon-Garrity.


April 7, 4:00 p.m., Carol Bruess's Residence
Faculty who are currently engaging in the community in their coursework are invited for a casual conversation about community engagement (over cheese and wine) at the home of Carol Bruess. Get feedback from your colleagues about how things are going this semester. Bring a faculty colleague to draw more into the conversation. Please RSVP for the April 7 conversation so we can prepare for how many are coming; we'll have to limit attendance to the number Carol's living room can hold—so act fast!


May 2, 4:30 p.m., Woulfe Alumni Hall
Come celebrate the 2016 GALE Award Recipients
and our collective efforts to advance the common good.


May 31, June 1, June 2; 
9:00 a.m. - noon (until 1:30 p.m. on Thursday), Library 102

The next introductory workshop will be held in June, and is limited to fifteen participants. Sign-up early.
Contact Kelly Sardon-Garrity to reserve your spot.



Engaged Scholars Announced

Carol Bruess and Adam Kay will serve GALE as Engaged Scholars during the spring term of 2016. Read about these scholars in the Newsroom.

Biologists to attend Clinton Global Initiative

Three of Jill Manske's students have been selected to attend the Clinton Global Initiative University. The project, "Team TB: Community Ambassadors for Tuberculosis Management and Care," began as a class project in their Fall 2015 Biology of Emerging Infectious Diseases class.

COJO Professor Sets Study Away Teaching Record

Dr. Kevin Sauter has taught more courses abroad/away during J-term than any current instructor in the UMAIE consortium. He recently co-taught “Hawai’i: Multi-Cultural Communication in Diverse Organizations” for the ninth time and he brought students to South Africa for "Culture and Communication in Post-Apartheid South Africa” five times from 2006-2015. 332 students, the majority of them UST students, have benefitted from Dr. Sauter’s dedication to the UST Center for Global & Local Engagement (GALE)’s mission: "Our hope is to provide meaningful opportunities for the 21st century Tommie; the academically prepared, globally aware, culturally agile, morally responsible change maker who is equipped to think critically, act wisely and work skillfully to positively influence our complex world.” Congratulations, Kevin, on this remarkable record from your GALE colleagues and friends!


Engaging conversation starters for your classrooms:

"The Reductive Seduction of Other People's Problems"
by Courtney Martin

Center for Civic Reflection
Looking for a new exercise to use in class to spark discussion?
Search the civic reflection library.

"Want to help someone? Shut up and listen!"
TED Talk with Ernesto Sirolli



Here is the line-up of spring 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
as well as for fall 2016 and J-term 2017



Are you new to community engagement, or are you looking to implement engagement in a new course? Check our Matchmaker pages for requests we have received from our community partners. Contact the community partner directly to begin working together—and draw us in as the project takes shape.

Brightside has opportunities in biology, accounting, entrepreneurship, finance, management, marketing, communication and journalism, computer science, English, geography, health and human performance, and social work.


Battered Women's Legal Advocates has opportunities for community engaged courses in business, communication and journalism, computer science, criminal justice, economics, education, English, family studies, justice and peace studies, political science, psychology, public health, social work, sociology, Spanish, statistics, women's studies, and law.



Michigan Journal

Please consider submitting an article to the Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning (MJCSL). The MJCSL is a national, peer-reviewed journal with faculty and administrator subscribers all over the world, and publishes articles on: research, theory, pedagogy, and other issues pertinent to curriculum-based service-learning, campus-community partnerships, and scholarship of or on engagement. The first step in the submission process is to send Jeffrey Howard (jphoward@umich.edu) an abstract outlining your topic that is no more than a page in length. Please consult submission guidelines for more information.

Undergraduate Journal of Service-Learning

The Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning and Community-Based Research is a refereed, multidisciplinary, online journal that invites undergraduates to join the academic conversation on service-learning and community-based research. The Journal is supported through the Center for Service Learning and Community-Based Research at Pennsylvania State University, Berks. Submission guidelines are available on the publication's website.

NERCHE Nominations

The annual Ernest A. Lynton Award for the Scholarship of Engagement for Early Career Faculty recognizes a faculty member who is pre-tenure at tenure-granting campuses or early career (i.e., within the first six years) at campuses with long-term contracts and who connects his or her teaching, research, and service to community engagement. The Lynton Award emphasizes community-engaged scholarly work across faculty roles. The scholarship of engagement (also known as outreach scholarship, public scholarship, scholarship for the common good, community-based scholarship, and community-engaged scholarship) represents an integrated view of faculty roles in which teaching, research/creative activity, and service overlap and are mutually reinforcing, is characterized by scholarly work tied to a faculty member's expertise, is of benefit to the external community, is visible and shared with community stakeholders, and reflects the mission of the institution. In addition, NERCHE and the Center for Engaged Democracy at Merrimack College conceptualize scholarly engagement in terms of social justice in a diverse democracy. This year's award will be presented at the 22nd Annual Conference of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities (CUMU), "Charting the Future of Metropolitan Universities," which will be held from October 23-25, 2016 in Washington, D.C. If you would like to nominate a UST early career faculty for this award, please study the process and inform Kimberly Vrudny of your intention to nominate a colleague.

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This year, the COMPANION will be published only online.
Watch for announcements about the return of a print edition.