Civic Literacy and Skill Building in the Local Context
Together, and with renewed vigor, SUNY Geneseo and the Village of Geneseo have acted on the advice of Grady Bogue that “Orchestrating the tension between individual interests and community interests, between the good of self and the good of the community requires great engagement.” The engagement that has been cultivated this fall is expected to reinforce the College’s commitment to civic literacy and skill building, and civic agency, and lead to even more significant College-Village collaboration in the months ahead.
Consider Opportunities for Community Service When Choosing a College
There are a number of factors to consider when selecting a college. Adding opportunities for community involvement to the list could help prepare students for a successful career. But it might also result in stronger communities and a new generation of civic leaders.
What Kind of Day Has it Been?
Day of service events are commonplace on University campus. For many, these are traditional events held each year that create space for students to contribute to their community in the spirit of teamwork and collaboration. At their best, they can develop deep and meaningful bonds between institutions and communities. In some cases, however, these events can be come stale, systematic affairs, where participants go through the motions of service without deeply understanding their surroundings or reflecting on their work. Some institutions have eliminated day of service events altogether, opting to invest in more reflective and learning-focused experiences such as service-learning projects and alternative breaks.
Tempered Radicals, Social Entrepreneurs, and Cookie Bakers
Tempered Radicals, describe those professionals who maintain multiple, sometimes conflicting, commitments to their constituents and to social justice ideals (Dostilio, 2017, p. 16). These radicals are adept at holding conflict in one hand and leveraging relationships, priorities, and resources in the other. The one-day service during orientation is one such example. One-day events may not be as axis shifting as other high impact practices, but that does not mean they are not without merit.
Knowledge that Works at the Polls
While there is still a great deal of work ahead, Pavan Purswani and the Office of Transitions and Community Engagement will continue to work to drive voter engagement at UB. And while other campuses may consider adopting some of the successful practices at UB, it’s important to choose strategies that work for your campus and that keep your institution’s unique culture and practices in mind.
Lessons Learned & Resources from the Inaugural Washington & Jefferson College Symposium on Democracy
This Symposium was highlighted by internationally-renowned experts on democracy, student and faculty led panel discussions, exhibits in the U. Grant Miller library, and participation by the W&J community. Follow the link for more information and resources about these events.