Building a Comprehensive Student Competency Assessment at Florida International University
Assessment is a focus for institutions because it is a way to show the impact programs are having on students, but people outside the department doing the assessment are not always able to understand or relate to the results of that assessment. At the Center for Leadership and Service (CLS), we have developed and began to assess a set of student leadership competencies applicable to more than our department to help address this issue.
Going Straight to the Source: Interviewing Community Partners to Gauge Student Impact
We know that students who participate in our well-constructed civic engagement experiences are positively contributing to the community, right? Students tell us compelling stories every day about what they learned at their service site, or we receive a note of gratitude from a community partner who supervised student volunteers. Anecdotal support for our work is important and stories are the lifeblood of shared experiences. But how do you collectively document such anecdotes and report them in meaningful way to others—deans, administration, donors or the community in general? As we continue to feel pressure to provide more formalized evidence of impact to various stakeholders, how do we include the spirit of these stories in our reporting while also evaluating our work more systematically?
Linking Leadership and Service: Creating Reflective Experiences for Students
More often than not, students entering our colleges and universities think about service as a requirement. There’s even the stereotype of the highway clean up crew picking up litter. Is that service? Sure, it provides a service to the community. But where’s the learning in that experience? There should be some level of structured reflection to enhance the experience.
The Trials and Tribulations of Choosing a Community Partner
Fall semesters are in full swing and many campuses have hosted their involvement fairs designed to engage students in community and campus life. Whether your campus has a long history of community engagement or your campus is relatively new to the scene, it can be challenging to determine who to build a relationship with. Sometimes college campuses can be viewed as free labor, and receive multiple requests weekly for assistance. . .