Humboldt: Youth Educational Services (YES) and Service-Learning Interns
Humboldt State University is located along the California North Coast where the redwood forests meet the Pacific Ocean. More than 500 full- and part-time faculty members at Humboldt State teach 7,500 students in the arts, humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, and professional programs. The university offers over 100 undergraduate, graduate and pre-professional programs. It is known for its favorable student-faculty ratios, an emphasis on social and environmental responsibility, high rates of job placements, and the rate at which students go on to earn doctoral degrees. Humboldt also boasts an unusually high proportion of graduates serving in the Peace Corps and managing public and nonprofit service organizations.
Student leadership for community engagement is organized into two programs at Humboldt State University, both of which are housed in the Division of Student Affairs and report to the Director of the Career Center and Service Learning Programs. Funding for the programs comes from a variety of sources, including the Division of Student Affairs, the Associated Students, fundraising events, and a variety of grants written by professional staff.
Youth Educational Services (YES) has been supporting students in creating and implementing volunteer programs since 1968. This student-run nonprofit houses 15 community service programs, with the potential to support additional pilot programs each year. YES Directors organize and implement the programs, with three to five student Program Consultants assisting them along the way. YES programs range from working with people who are refugees, homeless, pregnant and parenting teens, consumers of mental health services, and youth to offering services not available through local agencies. Through YES services, student leaders attempt to act as allies and resources in an effort to end the cycle of oppression in the community at large. While the primary mission of YES is community service and volunteering, many programs qualify as service-learning opportunities for university courses.
The Service-Learning Internship program is housed within the campus Service Learning Center, with the primary mission to incorporate service learning into the curriculum at Humboldt State. A team of five to six interns receive on- going, intensive training from professional staff aimed at developing their skills so they can assist in implementing programs and activities that support the center, facilitate campus-community partnerships for service learning, promote community engagement across campus, and develop volunteer opportunities and special events.
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.