Civic and Community Engagement Minor

The minor in Civic and Community Engagement provides an opportunity for students to extend their education beyond the classroom through engagement in socially meaningful public scholarship in both pre-existing and newly developing community projects. This minor entails situated as well as experiential learning. Students apply, test, analyze and re-formulate academic material in the context of public problems and community settings. Engaging in "learning-by-doing" allows students to communicate across differences, deliberate public problems, fulfill civic responsibilities, gain insight into personal values and world-views, develop civic skills including observation and listening, and further develop career interests and professional goals.

Recommended courses

View the complete Undergraduate Bulletin for this minor »

Prescribed courses

Foundations: Civic and Community Engagement (three credits)
This course provides an orientation to themes and issues in civic and community engagement. It explores the philosophical foundations of democracy, and invites students to reflect upon what it means to be a citizen. It is an interdisciplinary course with a focus on the rhetorical practices needed to create and sustain a thriving community. Additionally, students in this course will participate in a service-learning and/or a community-based research project with the Olivet Boys and Girls Club of Reading. 

Supporting Courses and Related Areas 

Introduction to American Studies (three credits) 
A study of selected attempts to identify and interpret movements and patterns in American culture. Includes community-based research (oral histories of local Vietnam War veterans)

Service Learning Scholars (one credit) 
This course combines theory and practice in service learning and community- based research to train students to be leaders in courses involving service learning or community-based research. Students will be assigned to a course involving service learning and community-based research and will be paid for this work. Permission of instructor required. Contact Dr. Laurie Grobman at [email protected] for details. 

Environmental Science (three credits) 
Kinds of environments; past and present uses and abuses of natural resources; disposal of human wastes; prospects for the future. Students who have passed BIOL 220 or any other upper-level ecology course in biology may not schedule this course. Includes service learning and community-based research.

Intercultural Communication Theory and Research (three credits) 
Intercultural and cross-cultural communication research theory and practice as applied within and across national boundaries.

Introduction to Criminal Justice (three credits)  
Overview of the criminal justice system, including legal foundations, processing and correction of offenders, extent and types of crime, victims.

Introductory Macroeconomic Analysis and Policy (three credits) 
National income measurement; aggregate economic models; money and income; policy problems. Includes service learning and community-based research.

Competing Rights: Issues in American Education (three credits) 
An examination of educational issues relevant to democratic citizenship; emphasis is on understanding the relationship among politics, schools, and society.

Writing in the Humanities (three credits)
Instruction in writing persuasive arguments about significant issues in the humanities. A student may take only one course for credit from ENGL 202A, 202B, 202C, and 202D. Includes community-based research: researching and writing a history of the local Olivet Boys and Girls Club.

Sociology of the Family (three credits) 
Family structure and interaction; functions of the family as an institution; cross-cultural comparisons. Students may take only one course for General Education credit from SOC 030 or HD FS 129.

Globalization, Technology, and Ethics (three credits) 
An investigation of technology and ethics in the globalized world from contemporary, socio-cultural, and historical perspectives.