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Academic Service Learning
California's Call to Service

  • VOTING CAMPUS SUBMITTING FORM: Humboldt State University
  • RESOLUTION OR ACTION ITEM IN QUESTION:

Resolution on the Governor's Community Service Graduation Requirement

  • BRIEF RATIONALE FOR SUBMITTING DISSENTING OPINION:

Humboldt State University dissents from the above proposed resolution because we believe it does not recognize the important distinction between Community Service and Service Learning.

  • EXPLANATION OF RATIONALE:

Humboldt State feels that the current resolution in response to the Governors call for mandating community service as a requirement for graduation only perpetuates the belief that the Governor was speaking about a narrow definition of Community Service in which participants perform non-curriculum linked tasks, such as picking up trash. In contrast, we believe that the term Community Service was meant to be interpreted broadly, thus enabling each campus to determine its own version of Community Service. There are many forms of Community Service, ranging from beach clean-ups to tutoring children to political internships. At Humboldt State, many students participate in a form of Community Service called Service Learning.

Like the CSSA, HSU has defined Service Learning as programming that provides educational experiences under which students learn and develop though active participation in thoughtfully organized service experiences. These experiences, which are integrated into students' academic curricula, are designed to meet both the service needs of the community and the educational needs of students. They provide students with the opportunity to incorporate knowledge and skills gained through the University into real-life situations in their own communities.

Through this interaction between the University and community environments, Service Learning strives both to improve the local community and to enhance the overall educational experience of students.

The resolution currently before the CSSA only reinforces the idea that the Governor is speaking about a narrow definition of Community Service and not the broader, more educationally-linked concept of Service Learning.

  • CONCLUSION:

Humboldt State feels that instead of producing a reactionary response to the call for Community Service, CSSA would instead be better served by proactively defining our terms and expectations for Community Service. We suggest that the CSSA continue to support the existing Community Outreach Programs on each campus and that Service Learning be examined as a means of both satisfying the Governors mandate and the educational curriculum.

Content Contact:
Judy Botelho
(562) 951-4749
Technical Contact:
webmaster@calstate.edu

Last Updated: April 29, 2008