Certificate of Achievement in Community-Engaged Learning
The Certificate in Community-Engaged Learning is a collaboration between the Center for Community Engagement (CCE), the dean of the College, and Arts, Sciences and Engineering (AS&E) academic programs. The program supports students, faculty, and community partners who combine teaching, research, and practice to build scholarship and address pressing issues facing communities locally, regionally, nationally, and globally.
Through pursuing an academic certificate in community-engaged learning, students passionate about integrated learning and responding to community-identified needs are able to design a course of study and practice that complements the Rochester Curriculum and their chosen areas of study. The certificate is designed to contextualize abstract theories, develop critical skills, and challenge assumptions that will prepare them for their future at Rochester and beyond. The capstone project should address the needs of under-served communities beyond campus and it should build the capacity of the partner organization leaving them with assets that outlast the time during which the student is completing their capstone project.
10 Minute Walk to the Park: Accessibility and Activation in the City of Rochester
Emily worked for HealthiKids at Common Ground Health and the City of Rochester Department of Recreation and Youth Services (DRYS). Emily worked to capture child perceptions of play across different areas of the city of Rochester and created “pilot” activation program for DRYS based on data collected.
Budding Partnerships: Institutional Engagement with Urban Farming in Rochester
Sophia implemented a new community-engagement program to the University of Rochester’s EcoReps program. In partnership with Grow Green, an urban garden and outdoor classroom of the South West Area Neighborhood. Sophia worked to create a project catalogue that meets the interests and needs of both Grow Green and potential future EcoReps upon which to collaborate through the relationship she established. Some projects already completed by EcoReps under Sophia’s program include designing a new logo, launching an official website for Grow Green, writing educational notebooks about the insect/animal life at the garden for volunteers and children, creating lesson plans for a six-week summer youth program at the site, researching edible pond systems to implement on site, and drawing harvest maps to display on site for volunteers and visitors.
Increasing Effectiveness and Cohesiveness of the Department of Human Services Through Policy Revision
Kat worked with Child Protective Services to create a policy manual to encourage and create more capacity for organization. The manual clarifies policies for caseworkers, specifically regarding medical consents, special payments, college payments, daycare, extracurricular activities, and reimbursing foster parents. Katherine reviewed CPS’s policies one by one to determine what was outdated and revised the policies after meeting with the policy team.
Wrestling with Care, Nudging Toward Justice: An Ethnography of a Faith-Based Organization
Rochester Interfaith Hospitality Network (RAIHN) provides services to homeless Rochester residents, and Emerson’s Capstone project overlapped with his senior honors thesis in Religion, which focused on the way religion motivates people to work toward a better world. The thesis was based on ethnographic data collected from interviews and field notes compiled from conversations with volunteers and clergy involved in the RAIHN network, as well as interviews with the families using RAIHN’s services. Along with this research, Emerson produced a series of volunteer training videos to complement RAIHN’s in-person training for volunteers.