Student-Originated Studies: Taking Action in Our Communities (CCBLA)
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What ideas and skills enable us to accompany and collaborate with local communities and schools as they address the economic, social, political and educational challenges they face? This Student-Originated Studies (SOS) will introduce students to community work through internships or projects. Offered in collaboration with Evergreen’s Center for Community-Based Learning and Action, the program builds skills and offers a collaborative space to share experiences and learning. It is appropriate for students with previous community experience, as well as students seeking to learn how to apply classroom-based learning to community work and educational opportunities.
Community-based work can involve any focus; immigration, community development, adult literacy, homelessness, and public health are some issues that groups in our region address in innovative ways. In our studies, we will emphasize modes of identifying and valuing community knowledge—knowledge that supports activism and advocacy. We’ll address the practical and theoretical issues of community work: How do we value our own distinctive identities while respecting differences we encounter? What skills do communities find useful? How does collaboration differ from helping?
Students will develop a project or internship with guidance from faculty. Students will also engage in classroom learning, community panels, seminar, reflection, and workshops on and off campus. The range of academic and community work suited to this program includes working as an intern at a community agency; working with one or more community members to learn about a special line of work or skills that enrich the community as a whole; or designing a community action plan or case study aimed at problem-solving a particular challenge. Fundamental skills include observation/documentation (visual and written), research, developing cross-cultural competencies, and self-reflection/autobiography.
Readings include works by Miles Horton and Andrea Dryness, among others. We’ll also read essays that focus on ethics, challenges, empowerment, and the impacts of race, class and gender as constituents of our own and community experience .
This program is ideal for responsible, self-motivated students who value collaborative learning, are enthusiastic about shaping a community of co-learners, and are committed to learning from and with community organizations and educators.
This offering will prepare you for careers and advanced study in:
community development, the nonprofit sector, journalism, education, and media arts
Class Size: 25
Scheduled for: Day
Final schedule and room assignments:
Located in: Olympia