Seventeen MSUM Academic Service-Learning practitioners are taking the commitment to complete 125,000 volunteer hours very seriously. They, and close to 400 students, participated in a variety of service-learning activities this fall. The reasons to incorporate Academic Service-Learning include improving their student’s understanding of class topics, promoting critical thinking and problem-solving skills, and learning more about social issues and their causes. These seventeen dedicated faculty members choose to implement service-learning into their courses for a variety of reasons. Some reasons include providing opportunities for their students to be more involved in community issues and to add new insights and dimensions to class discussions.

For example, Dr. Melanie Schicker’s Health Service Administration (HSAD 416 and 420) students volunteered at Sanford health and worked with the V.A. staff this fall. At these locations, her students volunteered in the dining hall, took orders, delivered meals, socialized with the residents, sorted donations, and organized group activities. Dr. Schicker believes that the service hours her students performed will assist them in their understanding of management and organizational behavior theories and practices.

Three of the seventeen MSUM practitioners will be at the Volunteer and Service Fair on Tuesday, Feb. 2. The fair will be held in the CMU ballroom from 10-2. If you would like to find out more about their Service-Learning projects, and receive a complete list of the courses and professors that utilized ASL this fall, stop by the Service-Learning table. MSUM Service-Learning coordinator, Dr. Mike Coquyt, will also be on hand to distribute literature about service-learning and to talk to you about the benefits of incorporating Academic Service-Learning into the courses you teach.

For more information about Service-Learning visit the website at www.mnstate.edu/asl or email Dr. Coquyt at michael.coquyt@mnstate.edu.