Service-Learning January Digest

Wondering what’s been going on in the field of service-learning? NYLC to the rescue. Here’s the latest scoop in service-learning news this past month:

  • Service-learning has proven to be a beneficial teaching strategy for educators. “The goal is for students to gain a deeper understanding of civic responsibility and how it can have a powerful impact on their future,” says TeachHUB education writer Janelle Cox.

  • At Pacelli Catholic Schools in Stevens Point, Wisc., service-learning is an important part of the school culture. At all stages of education, students engage in service at the local and international level.

  • In September, the 2015 recipients of the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll were released. This is the highest honor schools can receive for service-learning. Presidential winners included Adler University, Georgetown University, Springfield College, and University of Northern Iowa.

  • The partnership between the National Center for Families Learning and Toyota corporation has been going steady since 1991 and promotes families contributing to their communities by learning together and advancing literacy and education. “Toyota Family Learning demonstrates learning that can, and should, happen everywhere, and at any age…Also, [youth] are more likely to grow up and serve their own communities by following their parents’ example,” says president and founder of NCFL Sharon Darling.

  • Students of Northeastern University shared their experience with service-learning during the fall semester. More than 800 of its students were enrolled in service-learning related courses. The university also holds a yearly science-fair style EXPO highlighting the relationships created through their service.

  • Wyman Center’s Teen Outreach Program in St. Louis empowers teens to become leaders and abstain from risky behaviors such as teen pregnancy and dropping out of school. TOP promotes civic leadership. “The community and service-learning piece…it is the area where the young people are really able to build a sense of efficacy,” says Christina Donald, senior director of TOP’s partner services team.

  • A Ph.D candidate at Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of Education, Amanda Hall has been named one of three Outstanding Young Virginians of 2016. Hall teaches a graduate service-learning course and is currently researching critical service-learning. “Winning this award, I’m just really humbled and honored,” says Hall. “For me, it all comes back to critical service-learning [and] to helping students to use the knowledge that they have and the knowledge that they’re learning in school to really make change—change that’s meaningful to them…”

  • On December 8, we lost a leader in service-learning. Most know John Glenn from his accomplishments as an astronaut, but he also was an avid service-learning advocate. Glenn also sought new frontiers in teaching and learning as the Chair of the National Commission on Service-Learning.