Service Learning Just the Beginning

By By [email protected]

By [email protected]

Dear Editor,

I was glad to see your article “Student Groups Look to Promote Service Learning on Campuses” in the September 10th edition of the Chronicle. However, I think your article missed some of the purpose of this exciting initiative. The “Get a Life” campaign isn’t just about service learning but also civic engagement. Studies conducted by the National Campus Compact, for which President Machen is one of the Chairs, have shown that as the number of students engaging in service is on the rise the number voting and engagning in other forms of political participation is on the decline. It seems that most college students aren’t seeing the connection between the need for community service and state and federal public policy.

Please don’t misuderstand my position on Service Learning, as a professional in the field I could espouse the values of the pedagogy for hours. However, it is through the very work that I have done with students that I understand the importance of creating an environment and opportunity for students to connect their service with the socio-political context in which the needs exist. I applaude the Students Serving Utah Network & ASUU for their efforts on the U. campus and hope the Bennion Center and ASUU continue the dialogue in the future.

Alexis BucknamProgram Coordinator,Service Learning & LeadershipCal Corps Public Service CenterUC BerkeleyBS Business Management, ’96