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Faculty Benefits of Community Engagement

❶Undergrad Community-Based Action Research. To further push the envelope, the shelter will contact local business such as Goodwill and set job interviews for the mothers to increase their chances of obtaining a job Tom.

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Student Benefits of Community Engagement
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The communication will be improved by it being necessary for the students to modify their communication style to the people and situation they are working with. Other proponents of service learning claim that it improves student learning, helps students understand the responsibilities of living in a democratic society, and addresses important social problems facing communities. All of these benefits might seem possible from service learning, but all are qualitative benefits and cannot really be measured to prove the fact that there is any real benefit from service learning.

While service learning has many supporters, it also has many who disapprove of it. Some academics feels that service learning dilutes the curriculum by consuming student time and energy that could be better spent in traditional academic pursuits such as library work or research. I know that many pharmacy students feel the same way. They would rather spend more time on learning about drugs and pharmacy than volunteering their time at a soup kitchen.

Another criticism of service learning is that the true impact of the projects to the community. This is also a common problem with service learning. Although sixteen hours may seem like an eternity to some students, the truth is that more time must be put in for students to do something real and truly develop skills such as communication skills.

Although there are numerous faults with service learning, there are many benefits apparent that can help students. But, this is only possible if the course is structured and implemented into the curriculum appropriately.

This must involve the faculty to evaluate the community sites and have the school and the organization have an agreement on what types of work the students will be doing. For example, the University of Texas has an agreement with the sites that the students go into that mandates interaction of the students and the people that organization serves. The faculty should also assist the student in the goals that are to be accomplished at the site.

Rebecca Sipe continues in her article about how to have a beneficial service learning experience. She maintains that successful service learning projects are built on three key elements. First, the project should provide meaningful service to others and this service must meet the needs identified by both the school and the community organization.

Second, the service learning project must provide clear connections to the goals for the class. Finally, service learning projects must provide ample time to allow self-reflection of the experiences.

This will allow ongoing and in-depth learning. As in traditional internships, students are charged with producing a body of work that is of value to the community or site. However, unlike traditional internships, service internships have on-going faculty-guided reflection to challenge the students to analyze their new experiences using discipline-based theories. Service internships focus on reciprocity: Community-based action research is similar to an independent study option for the student who is highly experienced in community work.

This approach can be effective with small classes or groups of students. In this model, students work closely with faculty members to learn research methodology while serving as advocates for communities. This model assumes that students are or can be trained to be competent in time management and can negotiate diverse communities.

The course instructor serves as the advisor for the directed study option. Such arrangements require departmental approval and formal student registration. There are many ways to integrate community engagement into an existing course, depending on the learning goals, the size of the class, the academic preparation of the students, and the community partnership or project type.

Below are some general tips to consider as you begin: The relationship between Mrs. Owen and the seniors, as well as the seniors with each other, is very different from the sophomores. The seniors, approaching college, have embraced the responsibility they have to their own education, and generally they demonstrate a desire to prove themselves intellectually to their teacher and to their peers.

They participated with much greater enthusiasm in book discussions with Mrs. Owen, and they conversed with each other with equal excitement. The differences between these two groups helped me to realize how much other people influence the way we think of ourselves and how we behave.

The tenth graders still feel and act like children, not realizing how close they are to life outside of high school. This fear influences them to participate less, direct questions only at their teacher, and engage in off-topic discussions with classmates during activities. The twelfth graders, on the other hand, are beginning to feel their proximity to their future lives and are accruing knowledge to prepare themselves. They purposefully involve each other in stimulating discussions, practicing for college life and for the work force.

The lasting impression that this service learning experience has had on me, is the importance of understanding the impact our circumstances have on us. Although some of the differences in maturity between the tenth and twelfth graders is purely determined by age, a portion of it is also the influence of peer pressure.

Young people are unsure of themselves in almost every situation. They feel insecure and unprepared, constantly striving for the approval of their families and friends. Their growth into mature respectable, young adults is heavily influenced by the condition of their environment. Paloma Marquez Nutrition This assignment was appealing to me because helping those in need is something that I have always enjoyed, and other classmates who had volunteered there talked about how much they had learned from the experience they had there.

Obviously, because I was doing it for my nutrition class, nutrition had to be front and center in my volunteering services. It took her a while to get back to me so I had to call back to make sure she received my phone call. Then, she told me to show up at 6: We talked about incorporating nutrition into volunteering so in comparison to most of the volunteers who are there for the social aspect, I had the chance to help on the serving line, be the coffee girl, and bake healthy cookies for them towards the end.

I was asked to serve food in the service line. The service line consists of different stations with different kinds of food such as sandwiches, juice, fruits salad, dairy products, etc. Their orange ticket entitled them to a meal of the day plus milk and yogurt to go. They could take home one egg carton per ticket and could get a lunch which had a sandwich, juice, some type of fruit and vegetable, and lastly, eggs, mashed potatoes, gravy, and bread at the end. Then they would get an orange tray where their meal of the day could which gave them the option of getting some fruit salad, some type of dairy product; in addiotion they could get both milk and yogurt to go.

Then they could get one egg carton per person with two to three prepackaged foods plus a pastry. On Saturday, the same type of food was given out except they had spaghetti for lunch instead of eggs. People were allowed to go through the line times each morning. I came to notice that most of them did not like fruits or vegetables and always found a way around them but loved pastries and always wanted to take more.

When I served on the food line, people would often ask me if the food was high in protein or to give them high protein foods. Women usually asked for salads and a lot of packaged fruits and vegetables, and I often heard them say they needed to be careful choosing what they eat.

People even brought in their own cups that were bigger than the ones given so they could put more coffee in. On my last day volunteering, I brought in oatmeal cookies that I baked myself. They were healthy oatmeal cookies with whole wheat flour, oatmeal, and some had raisins.

Going in to volunteer that day I honestly thought that many people would not want cookies, but to my surprise everyone did.

As I offered the cookies people would look at the cookie for a while but decided to take one anyway. Some people even whispered that they were healthy but good, which made me laugh. Men, women, and kids liked them, and they were a success. I ran out of cookies in thirty minutes or so. I learned choices are very important, especially when a load of food is placed right in front of you. However, a lot of this is due to the fact that many of them are homeless or very poor, and all they want is food in their system.

I have learned how important it is to make the right food choices to better your health after observing some people making unhealthy choices. Raquel Alto English John Kirwan Do not be afraid of sudden terror nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes. For the Lord will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught. For years I repeated this verse to myself in the dead of night as shivers ran down my spine and goose bumps covered every inch of my body.

On the nights I would be awakened by terrible nightmares I would cover my body head to toe with my blanket leaving enough room to stick my nose through a hole and breathe. I always found comfort in the fact that morning would break and the sun would rise emitting a soft warmth to erase my fears. This local non-profit organization assists Hispanic women with issues associated with domestic violence. Before I stepped foot in the agency, I had never taken time to properly inform myself about domestic violence and the affect it has on marriages, but as I built friendships with the women who attended Las Valientes weekly support meetings, my heart grew and I found it significantly harder to leave after every meeting.

Thursdays nights became special, magical even, where age, culture, and beliefs did not exist. Four light brown walls shielded and separated us from a world that held cruel obstacles and scary confrontations. At first glance, it was not your typical playroom. Chairs in a deep shade of blue were lined up in a circle which gave a serious air to the room making the toys that were piled up in a comer seem out of place.

No children were in sight and the youngest people in the group were older teens, but on the fourth night Blanca and her three children walked in. The youngest ran the show from the moment she walked in.

I like to call her Dora, with her black shiny hair sitting above her shoulders and her bangs covering the tips of her long eyelashes. Her stubby legs carried her from toy to toy as we played in the waiting room, and her tiny hands grabbed lego after lego. As I watched her skim her fingers across every toy available I could overhear her mom telling the story that brought little Dora into my life.

The mom had been wrongfully imprisoned on two different occasions, held in a prison that also housed murderers. She had fled the iron grip of her husband only to return a few months later and then leave once and for all only weeks before we met her. As she told her story and I played with the kids in the other room, tears streamed down her cheeks and her voice broke after every few words.

Anger and frustration seeped out of her, and the women who knew exactly what she was going through did their very best to fill her void with love and compassion. In that playroom every woman was perfectly imperfect and loved beyond words. My main concern, at the start of my service learning, was the lack of resources available to immigrants in our community, but as I hugged the women who walked through the door I realized one of the most crucial resources they lacked was friendship.

Attending these meetings introduced me to a world where friendship is nonexistent, where husbands threaten and abuse their wives however their mood dictates, including restricting contact with family, friends, and even sons and daughters.

To me daylight was my friend, the bible verse was my friend, and together they guided me out of my nightmares, but the women at these meetings had no friend to guide them out of their nightmares.

In fact they lived day to day walking in their nightmares many of them eagerly awaiting the morning, some already beginning to soak up some sun. What holds them together now are the friendships that they have built amongst each other. Valerie Hawley Nutrition I chose this department because a friend and coworker works in the free and reduced lunch department. She loves her job, so I thought it would be perfect to learn all about it, and get a foot in the door.

I love broadening my horizons!! When I chose this work site I assumed I would be working at the nutrition department site simply processing paperwork and learning how the school lunch program operates.

Boy, was I surprised at where I ended up and what I ended up doing She was wonderful and promptly responded to my email. We met and got the paperwork going to set up for the service learning registration. I was able to fill out the background check paper needed to work at the schools and was approved right away. I was scared to death but quickly accepted the invitation. She gave me the work books we would be going over so that I could prepare and get a feel for what I would be doing.

My work site was at Maryland Elementary School and I would be teaching along with three teachers twice a week. I was terrified as the start date approached but once I began, I was quickly calmed and reassured by the children that I was doing great.

They were wonderful to teach and so willing to learn and even try new things. The teachers were all very supportive, helpful, and reassuring, and I appreciated my opportunity working with them. I had never taught a day in my life, and it was so awesome to hear one teacher tell me how good at it I was and to learn that teaching is a daily learning experience.

I learned a lot about myself and my genuine joy of teaching kids. I learned that kids really do want to learn and are eager and interested in learning about food and the benefits of nutrition for the body.

They were so enthusiastic when we did the activities and were so willing to eat healthier alternatives and dump the junk! I made sure to let the kids know how proud of them I was for their willingness to open their minds about trying new food.

I was happy to hear that, for the most part, the kids are all pretty active. This experience was majorly life changing. I have decided to change majors from Sociology to Nutrition. I want to teach kids about nutrition because I believe that the younger they are taught the better chance they have at believing and using the knowledge. I think kids are more open-minded and eager to learn. I have become more and more passionate about nutrition and how food really is medicine.

I want to end this saying that the service learning experience was the best and greatest opportunity one could get. I appreciate MiraCosta for offering it and I pray it is always there for future students to experience. Van Nguyen Nursing Certified Nursing Assistant Instructor: Mary Wright I have had a great experience with the Carlsbad by the Sea retirement home for the past week.

It is a private, not-for-profit, licensed continuing care retirement community which focuses on serving seniors age fifty and over as individuals and families.

The community is divided into three main categories: I was helping in the activity department, assisting with the transfer of residents from the activity room to the dining room or to go outside by the beach area. I learned a lot from the service learning experience; how to perform a safety transferring residents in a wheelchair; consideration for their physical disabilities; how important it is to fulfill their emotional needs in addition to their physical comfort i.

What I liked the most from this experience is how the residents and the staff here treat each other with dignity and respect. Everyone here always greets others with a sweet smile and treat each other in a very friendly and nice manner. Angel Ibarra English Whittinghill Budgeting, education, and economic development are all examples of multiple challenges that cities have to overcome on a yearly basis. In , the city of Vista was facing a rise of homelessness when focusing on families out on the streets.

With the support of neighboring cities and local churches, Vista community members were able to address this issue by establishing a shelter known as Operation Homeless Outreach Providing Encouragement HOPE with the intent of providing a safe haven for homeless families, and single women, and equip them with the proper resources to become independent.

I dedicated two weeks of volunteering for this organization and have learned how successful it has come to be over the years, and the powerful impact that it has on the families. Ultimately, the staff of Operation HOPE-Vista do a phenomenal job utilizing the resources provided to them in order to supply families with the essential services.

The shelter and resources will further assist the City of Vista with countering the rise in homelessness that its community faces. By having a solid foundation Operation HOPE-Vista was finally able to fully implement its guidelines and values to the shelter. The main objective for Operation HOPE-Vista is to help homeless families with young children, specifically single mothers.

In order to accomplish this goal, the shelter has a recovery program that consist of allowing families to live in the shelter for over sixty days, and during this time period the shelter offers workshops to the mothers which will teach them important skills that will assist them in finding jobs and improve other aspects of their lives.

For example, the shelter will coordinate with outside sources that will come to shelter and deliver classes to the mothers that will teach them how to write a resume, how to dress and interact in an interview, how to repair their credit, financial management, and many more important skills that are required in the job field.

To further push the envelope, the shelter will contact local business such as Goodwill and set job interviews for the mothers to increase their chances of obtaining a job Tom.

Not only do the mothers receive lessons on job searching, but also in medical care. Staff members from the Vista Community Clinic will come once a week to shelter and perform check-ups on the children and mothers, followed by giving any medical advice that families may need as well as teaching lesson on proper eating habits and nutrition.

Furthermore, tutoring is held every day of the week for the kids in order to help them with any issues that they may be facing with homework. Most of the times the reason why families are homeless is due to job loss, bills piling up, and being unable to pay rent, which forces them onto the streets. With this being said, the shelter acknowledges these issues that families have had in the past and are able to create individual case management plans for each family to move forward with regaining their independence.

Through my time of volunteering I was able to witness the gradual impact that the shelter has on the families. When I arrived I was directed to the common room where all of the families were gathered around to eat dinner.

The adults were quiet and reserved since it was their first time eating with one another and it takes time to get comfortable with meeting new faces. But, on the other hand the kids were loud, energetic, and more willing to interact with one another. After dinner was over the parents went off to a classroom to attend a workshop, which left me with the responsibility of taking care of children and running activities to keep them entertained.

Initially this was completely manageable since I only had to take care of three kids who were well behaved, but things became hectic when a group of four young brothers arrived late to the shelter. My situation immediately turned to a whirlwind of laughter, cries, and yelling that came from the seven kids. Each kid wanted to do a different activity such as reading, playing with blocks, or playing tag. At first it was a bit difficult to make everyone happy, but luckily reinforcements came to my aid when another volunteer arrived to the scene with face paint.

As a result, both my partner and I were successful at taking care of the kids. Once the workshop was over, the parents returned to the common room in order to get their children ready for bed and end the day.

With the first day of volunteering being completed it gave an idea of the routine that I was going to encounter in the upcoming days. By the third day of volunteering I was getting better at taking care of the kids and talking to the parents. I would eat dinner with the families and get well acquainted with them on a personal level, which was a great feeling because the parents would let me know that they are happy and comfortable with me watching over their kids.

With the approval of the parents I had gained the confidence to take care of the kids, which helped me tremendously on my last day of volunteering since there were more families that were admitted to shelter, and that meant that I would be taking care of more kids. I became responsible for a total of twelve kids that were between the ages of four through eleven. I was well prepared to take care of them this time around since I planned out which games to run such as freeze tag, red-light green-light, Simon says, and many more.

It was fun seeing them getting along with one another, to fight and cry, and how they were building somewhat of a family bond with each other. It genuinely made me happy whenever they would smile and laugh from playing these games, and telling them cheesy jokes because despite the fact that these kids are fully aware of their difficult situation, they are not letting it get the best of them; the children are resilient and intelligent.

From spending all of this time with the kids I had grown attached to them, thus it was extremely difficult to say goodbye on my last day of volunteering. Through my experience with Operation HOPE-Vista I have learned how a shelter comes to be, how it is run, and most important, the effects that it has on the families.

It provides families with more than a second chance in life, it gives them the opportunity to learn and prosper from their difficult circumstances. Overall, Operation HOPE-Vista is a phenomenal organization that is assisting the city of Vista in countering the rise of homeless families and offering families a stable support system. It is an organization that deserves more recognition and support from its community members.

They provide free surgery to about 7, children with physical deformities Howwework. The goals of this organization is to help children with physical deformities and to help them live a better life because most children with physical deformities are unfortunately bullied by other children and that can cause them to suffer from depression. They meet their goals by helping over children a year, and providing the children that they help with speech therapy.

Fresh Start hosts six to seven Surgery Weekends each year where experts in reconstructive surgery donate their time and talents to transform the lives of over children annually. They provide families with different kinds of services such as speech therapy, which allows the children that are being afflicted with craniofacial disorders, such as cleft lip and palate, to regain their ability to speak audibly and correctly.

Approximately 30 patients each year receive speech therapy services which grant confidence and motivation to accomplish their goals. Another service that they have is the laser clinics that treat approximately 84 infants, children and teens each year who suffer from deformities such as port wine stain and bums.

Laser treatments work by reducing the appearance of scars created by reconstructive surgery. They can arrange for transportation, lodging and meals for patients from outside of San Diego.

Also, they bring the patients to San Diego in order to ensure sanitary operation rooms, easily available and high quality equipment, and to have the resources to bring in a specialist for especially complex or rare conditions. The experience that I got was beyond wonderful, I always wanted to become a nurse and I am willing to fulfill that need that I have about helping others by achieving my goal of becoming a nurse one day.

Before this experience I was sure I wanted to become a forensic nurse, but thanks to the amazing experience I realized my heart is in pediatrics. The staff working for Fresh Start were so nice to me and made me feel really comfortable with asking any questions.

It was a pleasure working with her, she answered all my questions she had this amazing vibe that she transmitted to the children making them feel comfortable. I was really happy that I got to meet such a wonderful person I was translating for her everything the parents were saying in Spanish and I was doing the same with the parents translating her questions to them and to the children.

I realized how hard it may have been for a parent to have to sit and trust a stranger, that stranger being me to translate everything to them.

I could only imagine the frustration they may of had at the moment, but thankfully I was able to speak to them and let them know that I was there for them and that I was going to translate everything as accurately as I could.

The first patient that got to the room was a boy, he was really cute. He suffered of Microtia deformity of the ear. The strength of the parent was amazing and it transmitted to the child, at first I thought that it was only going to be that particular boy that was so strong.

To my surprise every child that walked into the room was so brave and happy and I was amazed by every single one of them. I got to meet six children, the oldest of the children that I got to meet was a girl that was twelve years old and the youngest was eighteen months. The story that shocked me the most was from the twelve year old girl, who was tragically burned when she was only 14 months.

The skin on her neck was attached to the skin of the chest, which made it really painful for her to raise her head. That answer was really shocking to me because I was not expecting that at all, I thought that with a burn like that, she would of had to obviously be taken to the hospital and get some treatment in the affected area. I was so shocked to imagine the pain that the girl that was sitting in front of me had to go through. I was burned once by boiling water and I was crying and I still remember to this day the pain that I felt.

Watching that little girl there with such strength made me realize how lucky I am that I never had to go through anything like that. I tried to understand the parent too, why he had not taken his child to the hospital, one of them was the lack of resources. Maybe they did not have money or another one that I thought about was that maybe the parents were too scared of taking their child to the hospital for the fear of their baby being taken away from them.

Another story that really impacted my life that day was a mother with two children, her daughter, who was four years old and her son who was 18 months they suffered from Treacher Collins Syndrome. Since the first time that I saw that little boy walk into the room my heart melted, he is such an angel. He was so happy, smiling the whole time and also he was so protective of his sister as the doctor was doing the check up on his sister he would stand right next to her and just carefully watch.

He kept trying to reach for his sister to hold him, the connection they had was so wonderful. The mother was really relaxed and she was answering to every question without any problem. The girl was going for her fifth reconstructive surgery unfortunately the syndrome had affected more the girl than her brother, she had problem with vision and had two procedures done on her head to reconstruct her cranial bones and two others on her facial bones.

This time they were going to have her go in for eye surgery to help her with her vision since her eyes could not look straight. Her posture changed, her shoulders slowly went down along with her face. I was amazed that she still decided to have her baby. I say this because I can only imagine how hard it can be taking care of a child with Treacher Collins Syndrome because this syndrome can affect several parts of the body such as vision.

I wanted to let her know how proud of her I was because there are several parents that would of chose to not have to go through the struggle of taking care of them or the difficulty that this syndrome may bring their child such as bullying.

Another girl that I got really attached to was a beautiful eight year old that was from Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico. She had ears six times as big as any girl her age. She was such a diva. She had this way of talking and fortunately she knew how beautiful she was, but the only thing that she did not like about herself was her ears.

I got really attached to this girl because she reminded me of myself at her age. On the day of the surgery, I did not want her to go on without her knowing that I was going to wait for her until she came out, and as soon as that girl walked into the post-operation room, she smiled and hugged me.

I felt such a joy that in some way and she felt comfortable with me. Another girl that was going to go into surgery suffered of Microtia and she was with her mother who was from a common land in Mexico.

They lived traditionally and had a farm; she would ride horses and do parades with the dresses that her grandmother made for her. I was able to translate for her on the day of the surgery when the nurse came to let her know that in any second her girl was going to go into surgery I could see the worried look in her eyes.

I could feel her sadness, but at the same time her hope. As the girl was walking into the operating room and her mom had to let her go and watch her leave, she crumbled and started too cry and I did too. I hugged her and I said that I was sure that her child was going to come out fine. After everyone left, the Fresh Start staff and I stayed because I wanted the parents of those children to know exactly what was going to happen after surgery.

I felt their frustration as I was wondering how hard it could be for a parent to have to sit through a procedure that was being explained to them but that they could not fully understand. Every parent wants to know what to do after surgery. I stayed for them and because I realize how much I loved every second of it.

I was able to learn about the procedures and I also was able to understand and practice some terminology that was being used by the doctor. I also learned that my passion for nursing and helping others affirmed my career path.

I am glad to say that this service did not affect me any way it actually helped me realize and know how lucky I am. I am truly changed by this experience; I have changed into a better person. I have learned that there are children out there who are going through so much and still have a huge smile and a positive attitude.

So this gives me strength to know that I can do it! And I realize how thankful I am for not having any physical deformities or syndromes affecting my life.

Because of this I am strong enough to volunteer on January 9, for the next surgical week. I am excited to meet more children and be able to talk to them and provide the parents with my services.

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Service-learning is a teaching and learning strategy that integrates meaningful community service with instruction and reflection to enrich the learning experience, teach civic responsibility, and strengthen communities.

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One good definition of service learning that I found, was, “Service learning is a form of experiential education in which students engage in activities that address human and community needs together with structured opportunities intentionally designed to promote student learning and development.” (Fredericksen). For my Service Learning Project I took the opportunity to volunteer with North County Lifeline (NCL) which is a local nonprofit organization that helps low income families and children in need in the North County San Diego area.

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Service learning offers the benefits of learning in a variety of ways as it alters the tone from a conventional classroom setting, to a hands-on situation that requires civic involvement different from customary classroom dialogue. service learning project essaysFor my service-learning project I wanted to volunteer at an elementary school, but I couldn't do it because I had to work as a volunteer in a retirement house. I'm preferred to look after children than elderly. First place that I chose was Villa Park but sen.