Student Opportunities

Student Opportunities & Resources

Service Learning:

A community-based approach to education that combines meaningful community service, critical reflection, and civic education—all of which enhance the academic learning in a particular course.

Through service learning, students have the opportunity to:

  • Put classroom concepts into practice
  • Use their unique skills and talents to work in solidarity with the community to create a more just and equitable world
  • Develop a reflective practice that enables them to think critically

View the Service Learning Courses (designated as SERL) for the current or upcoming semester

Global Service Learning Scholarships

The OSL provides scholarships to students enrolled in service learning courses that include a domestic or international travel/immersion component. Scholarships are reviewed on a rolling basis. Students are strongly encouraged to submit applications at least three months prior to the date of travel. Access the application on OrgSync or contact the OSL with questions.

Visit the Center for Faith and Public Life's Service and Civic Immersion page to learn more about travel/immersion programs.

Research and Publication Opportunities

The Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning and Community-Based Research will publish written work by undergraduates in the six categories. In each category, a published piece will contribute to the existing knowledge in a particular subject area.

 

Service Learning Associates

Become a peer leader

Each semester, OSL engages undergraduates as student leaders to their peers in service-learning courses. After an application process, each Associate works intensively with one professor to support a service-learning course which aligns with the Associate's academic background and interests. The Associates meet regularly with both faculty and fellow Associates throughout the semester and attend professional development trainings facilitated by the Office of Service Learning.

Purposes of the Service Learning Associate (SLA) Program
  • To provide students with opportunities for deeper engagement with service learning and understanding of theory and practice 
  • To provide students with enhanced leadership and skill training 
  • To provide faculty with increased level of support to engage in service learning
  • To enhance university-community partnership development

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is eligible to become an SLA?

Any current, enrolled undergraduate or graduate student who has taken a service-learning course at Fairfield University or at another institution of higher education is eligible.

What do SLAs do?

SLAs will assist faculty with course related activities such as maintaining communication with community partners, helping students to schedule their service learning experiences, supporting the facilitation of reflection, and so on.  The specific role of the SLA is worked out between the faculty member and the SLA in order to meet the unique needs of each service-learning course.  SLAs also have the opportunity to perform service or research projects and present their findings at conferences or as journal articles.

How is SLA distinct from a teaching assistantship?

SLAs, like teaching assistants (TAs), are meant to enhance the classroom by contributing to classroom activities and taking some of the administrative/logistical burden off of the professor.  However, unlike TAs, Associates only contribute to the portion of the class related to service learning. SLAs can serve as liaisons to students and the community and work in partnership with faculty on facilitating high quality service learning.

What will the Office of Service Learning provide?

  • Professional development training pre, during, and post experience for SLAs
  • Paying students at a rate of $10.25/an hour for a maximum of 75 hours per semester
What is expected of students?
  • An average of 5 hours a week to fulfill the SLA responsibilities.
  • Attend monthly professional development and reflection meetings with other SLAs and service-learning professionals
  • Attend check-in meetings with the professor you are working with (as determined by the professor)
  • Staff other events and activities as needed for the Office of Service Learning
For more information about applying, please contact Andrea Canuel. Applications open in late October for the following spring semester and in mid-March for the following fall semester.

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