By Michael W. LeDoux
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Extra resources for Civic Engagement and Service Learning in a Metropolitan University: Multiple Approaches and Perspectives
Semega, J. (2009). Median household income for states: 2007 and 2008 American community surveys. S. Census Bureau. , Poulin, J. C. (2006). From rogue program to poster child: A department‘s shaping of a university‘s mission. In K. ), Engaging departments: Moving faculty culture from private to public, individual to collective focus for the common good (pp. 45-62) . Boston: Anker Publishing. S. Census Bureau. (2001). United States census 2000. : Author. Widener University. (2004). Strategic plan.
In these neighborhoods the residents faced the same urban issues that the rest of city experienced; but, in addition, they felt the university was not actively engaged with its own students who lived in the community and who at times were not good citizens. This led to the university‘s creation of the Sun-Hill Task Force, which provided a forum for local citizens and the university to work together to identify and solve issues of mutual concern. We also used this forum to identify citizens who had potential to be liaisons to the university and the city and provided a small group of these individuals with leadership training.
With the very best (or worst) of intentions, students can cross lines, and it is the faculty member‘s responsibility to teach boundary setting as a critical skill in any form of engagement. In all this work and with all this responsibility, faculty often need guidance themselves. An experienced service-learning administrator at whatever level in the institution is critical for answering questions or directing faculty to institutional or community resources that might be helpful. Even knowing at what point to engage legal counsel, government agencies, police, medical personnel, or any of a number of others is a special problem-solving skill that sometimes requires sophisticated consultations and discernment.