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22 August 2012

Service-Learning Conference Abstract

I would like to share the abstract for the conference at which I will be presenting in October. I am assisting Dr. Elizabeth Cameron (Professor of Business Administration), Dr. Peggy Thelen (Associate Professor of Education), and Ms. Anne Ritz (Coordinator of Service Learning), all of whom are from Alma College.

     Theme:   Service-Learning
     Proposal Type:  Panel Discussion
Presentation Title:  A Collaboration in the Pursuit of Civic Engagement through Service Learning
This panel will explain unique collaborative programs between the Alma Community and Alma College.  The panelists will discuss cross-disciplinary collaborations with the Alma Public Schools and the powerful learning experiences of college students and elementary students.  The panelists will discuss the unique experience of blending college education majors with business majors to provide an innovative impact on our community.  This discussion will provide models from Alma College programs that have successfully turned theory into practice.  The panelists will provide examples of service learning projects, both domestic and international, from a variety of disciplines including: Spanish, Sociology, Communications, Chemistry, Business, Education, and Political Science.  The panelists bring extensive applied experience in service learning and civic engagement.  The presenters will discuss the achievements and challenges of many service learning projects.

As an undergraduate student, I went on a service-learning trip through Alma College (I attended the University of Michigan) to Quito, Ecuador, and I will be discussing my experience as an undergraduate participant. When I volunteered, I not only had the opportunity to learn how to speak Spanish, but I also worked at an after school program, where I taught English lessons, assisted with homework, created crafts, served snacks and dinner, among other responsibilities. It was a wonderful experience which solidified my decision to become a teacher of English, so I look forward to sharing at this conference.

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