WHAT IS SERVICE LEARNING?

Service Learning is "...a teaching and learning method that connects meaningful community service
with academic learning, personal growth and civic responsibility."


Early Childhood Education students providing information on healthy nutrition

You can look at Service Learning from different perspectives:

  • 'Hands On' Learning: Learn new skills while volunteering at an organization (host site) in the local community.
  • 'Giving Back' to the Community: Share your skills, knowledge and energy on a voluntary basis.
  • 'Integrative' Learning: Through Service Learning you connect the theory of the class with real life experiences.
  • 'Career Oriented' Learning: Learn more about what type of professional career you want.
  • 'Self-Reflective' Learning: Learn new strengths you didn't know you had.

Whatever perspective you choose, Service Learning is very rewarding and highly motivating!

Examples of Service Learning and host sites:

  • Help with a fundraiser for CASA or ChildHaven for your Interpersonal Communications class.
  • Tutor in a public school for your Calculus class.
  • Write a marketing plan for the local Farmer's market for your Marketing class.
  • Write labels and information sheets for artifacts in a museum for your English Writing class.
  • Organize an information market for parents for your Early Childhood Education class.
  • Prepare food-boxes at ECHO Food Bank for your Sociology class.
  • Take a trip to a Foreign Country such as Peru to tutor children in an orphanage for your Sociology class.

Service Learning is a 'WIN-WIN-WIN' Situation

Service Learning creates 'win-win-win' opportunities. Students, Instructors and the Community, all benefit from Service Learning.

Benefits for the Student:

  • Relevent for Co-curricular transcript and Resume
  • Links curriculum to student's lives
  • Helps clarify professional ambitions
  • Promotes community responsibility
  • Encourages multicultural awareness
  • Develops critical thinking and problem solving skills
  • Fosters personal growth and development
  • Students who are engaged through interactive learning are more likely to finish thier educational goals

Benefits for the Instructor:

  • Opportunity to connect 'theory' to 'practice'
  • Enhances a full learning-cycle
  • Helps build community in the classroom
  • Establishes relationships with agencies and people in the community
  • Provides a method of instruction beyond those traditionally used in the classroom

Benefits for the Community:

  • Provides volunteers to meet immediate service needs of community agencies
  • Makes community agencies aware of resources provided by the College
  • Develops potential pool of future volunteers or employees

For more information

Contact Kathy Jensen at (505) 566-3378 or email jensenk@sanjuancollege.edu
The Service Learning office is located on the Main Campus in Room 1717