About the Project
In 2007, the CSU Center for Community Engagement (CCE) was awarded a three-year grant from the Surdna Foundation, The Next Stage: Boosting Service Learning to New Heights, to formalize and expand training for leaders in community engagement.
Acknowledging students as a fundamentally untapped resource,the CSU Center for Community Engagement placed significant effort on a new infusion of leadership development among community-minded students. While CSU campuses - Chico, Humboldt, Los Angeles, and Monterey Bay – already had strong student training programs, there were many others seeking an opportunity to create student-focused community engagement leadership programs.
Drawing on these successes, training materials and useful examples were gathered, adapted, and published as Advancing Community Engagement With Student Leader: A 'How-To' Manual from the California State University . Following its release, CCE announced competitive sub-grants to develop new opportunities for student leadership in the CSU. Four campuses – East Bay, Fresno, Fullerton and San José – were funded. They spent the spring 2010 academic term working in campus teams of student leaders and advisors to design and implement initiatives that had student leaders at the forefront, while also receiving training and technical support from the Chancellor's Office.
Since beginning these efforts, we have made significant progress toward our goals and are pleased to begin expanding opportunities to campuses and organizations beyond the CSU. Among the outcomes and potential benefits to new participants are:
- A collection of dynamic curricula for advancing community engagement with student leaders has been designed, refined and disseminated both in the CSU and nationally.
- The capacity of service-learning offices to engage more students in their communities has been significantly bolstered.
- Workshop and training participants consistently indicate that their leadership skills and knowledge have increased, their work has been reinvigorated, and they are thinking about student leadership and community engagement programs in new ways.
- Survey findings from the four funded campuses indicate that program advisors are now providing students with effective guidance and formal training opportunities in an atmosphere that gives students a genuine voice in the development of their programs.
The CSU Center for Community Engagement gratefully acknowledges the Surdna Foundation for its generous and visionary support of The Next Stage: Boosting Service Learning to New Heights, three-year grant initiative.