Service-learning frequently builds lasting ties between universities and the communities in which they are located. Community agencies highly value the involvement of college students, not only for their enthusiasm, but because they are eager to explore the intersection of theory and practice, can be cultivated as potentially lifelong volunteers, and are likely to apply their professional skills to service commitment.
Some benefits include:
- Increased efficiency, quality of services, or extent of services offered by university-assisted agencies
- Increased access to university resources (e.g., facilities, expertise, programs)
- Improved relationships with the University of South Carolina
- Community-based research projects that enhance or improve an agency’s understanding of community needs
- Communities are exposed to and learn about emerging generations of students.
- Students can bring unique or modern skills to their service (e.g., webpage design).
- Myths and stereotypes that a community has about students can be broken down and dispelled. Similarly, myths and stereotypes that students have about a community can be removed through exposure and experience.
For more information about establishing a service-learning partnerships or formal Service-Learning Memorandums of Understanding with the University please contact Office of Student Engagement at firstname.lastname@example.org or Dr. Les Sternberg, Special Advisor to the Provost, Coordinating Office of Community Engagement and Service, at email@example.com.