February Service-Learning Digest

Happy leap month — minus the extra day. We hope you’re counting down the very few days ’til we’ll see you in St. Paul for the National Service-Learning Conference, March 11-13. It’s less than three weeks away, so get your service-learning swag packed!

Meanwhile, good news abounds in service-learning, even in the dead of winter.

NYLC’s board member and treasurer, Kevin Michael Days, has been appointed George Washington University’s community relations director. As he said in an article in the campus newspaper, the GW Hatchet, “The community is a rich resource of individuals. There is a lot untapped opportunity there to have relationships both authentic and positive.”

Teen driver safety Project Ignition sites also continue to make the news. Check out the work in central Illinois of the Danville High School Future Problem-Solvers group, who are addressing teen driver safety issues with a virtual reality simulator designed to mimic distracted driving.

In Wisconsin, federal 21st Century Community Learning Center sites are incorporating service-learning into after-school programming, knowing that often academic gains result. The Puma Scholars program in Madison, for example, is involving students in their academic enrichment program in making beds, blankets and toys for animals at the local humane society.

Closer to home, strands of service are working together. Conservation Corps Minnesota will  provide hands-on environmental stewardship and service-learning opportunities for young adults in the northwest suburbs in Minneapolis through a county parks department, getting them engaged in conservation, involved in the community, and knowledgeable about possible future employment in parks and conservation.

Please plan to join us to share more stories like these next month, at the National Service-Learning Conference in St. Paul — and come early for the Educators’ Institute!