December 10, 2001 Vol. VI, No. 8

25 New Service Learning Grants Awarded to Faculty

Spring 2002 Projects Will Aid Development of New Classes, Mentoring Program and Other Activities

Cal State Northridge's Center for Community-Service Learning has awarded 25 new service-learning grants for spring 2002 totaling more than $43,000. The grants will fund new service-learning classes, a faculty mentor program, faculty travel to scholarly conferences and department-wide activities in support of service-learning for students.

Seven new service-learning classes will be offered in spring 2002 in the departments of Art, Music, Theatre, Health Sciences, Secondary Education, and Chicano/a Studies. The author of each selected proposal will receive a $1,500 stipend for course development, attend a service-learning training workshop, and disseminate a report on their experience to future service-learning professors.

Also, a new faculty mentor program will begin, teaming experienced service-learning professors with novice practitioners in similar disciplines. These faculty mentors, who have taught award-winning classes in the past, will in turn train and mentor new service-learning faculty to prepare them to submit proposals for future courses.

The new grants also will cover the travel costs for seven faculty presentations at scholarly conferences, as well as incentive funds to promote service-learning pedagogy in the Health Sciences, Accounting & Information Sciences, Art, and Educational Psychology and Counseling departments.

Service-learning classes link meaningful community service to explicit academic objectives, preparation and analysis. Because of this new grant program, each of the University's eight academic colleges will benefit from the center's support of service-learning projects on campus.

The university currently offers about 50 community service-learning classes in which students perform projects in the community that are tied to the curriculum of their courses. Nonprofit and public organizations benefit from the students' work, while professors help the students understand the connection between the tasks they perform and their academic course work.

Funding for the new grants was made possible by an overall $2.2 million allocation from Gov. Gray Davis that resulted in $105,000 in new funds for the Northridge campus. These funds will be used for curriculum development and other support of the activities of the Center for Community-Service Learning, including community outreach, student placement and faculty training.

Winners of the four types of grants and a short description of their funded activity are listed below:

Faculty Curriculum Development Grants

($1,500 each):

Faculty Curriculum Development Mentoring Grants

(3 units of release time or equivalent stipend):

Each of the following is currently teaching service-learning courses and will train two or more additional faculty members in service-learning pedagogy. These faculty trainees will subsequently offer service-learning courses in fall 2002 or spring 2003 within the same department or college as the mentors.

Faculty Travel Grants

(up to $550 each)