Service Learning Student Orientation (Transcript)
Service learning is huge and it’s a part of the mission statement of our University.
It was a big deal. It changed a lot and changed the way I looked at teaching and people in general.
It really helped me learn about the course.
What you get out of service learning is just enormous. For instance, when I was down in Guatemala and I was helping with the children it helps you build skills that you wouldn’t have been able to build back here under the same circumstances.
So when you go into a community that all this is going on and it just puts everything into perspective, you’re like I learned that, that’s what that is like. I am seeing everything and everything comes together, and you want to help them because you have learned about all this and you just, and when you learn about it you think maybe we could do this to fix this problem and so you get to go out there and you get to make a difference and everything just comes together and wow this is why I am a sociology major. This is what I love to do and I like feeling of helping these people, I like being able to change this.
Well I think I definitely learned a lot about myself like patience and just certain aspects you need to learn when you’re working with kids.
About myself I learned I can work with the community and that I can be a roll model and can be a good leader.
Its just a really rewarding experience because you know, you go in there thinking your going to save the world, your really not, your just trying to get these kids to like make it the next day. I have a dad who grew up that way so for me, its like he’s done everything for me and he’s made me the way I am so if I go back into these classrooms then its kind of like going back and helping my dad. You know there is one less kid, it makes me teary, but there will be one less kid that has to grow up like him. I know he’s made a difference. If me just standing in the classroom gets these kids through school and makes them go to college for some reason you don’t have to go out there with this mindset that your going to save the world, it you just being there that makes a difference. These kids get up and come to school.
But service learning, this is all part of service learning because what I have learned going down to Katrina and Guatemala and working with the Red Cross. Is that, it takes a big effort but what you put into it, I mean you get out ten times fold. I’ve gotten, you know offers for internships. I have gotten tons of advice. People in the community come up to me all the time and, “oh your Kyle, wow, I read about you in the paper, can I help you, what do you need”. I’ve been to the Chamber of Commerce and they’ve invited me up many times. The Ventura County taxpayers association and I’ve been asked to speak at all these Rotary clubs. Its not just for the projects I do, it’s really because the service learning aspect. People recognize that when you’re doing service learning, you’re helping out the community as well as yourself. People recognize that when you’re doing service learning, you’re helping out the community as well as yourself.
After being in the classroom and seeing all the needs, the kids had. I kind of realized I couldn’t do that through teaching so now I want to look into more non-profit organizations where I can go out and advocate more for the kids, to get them the things they need to be successful in the classroom.
Everything just kind of comes together and you get a clear idea of what you want to do, and so that was really amazing.
I am kind of happy that I found something that I liked even better.
We were asked to do service learning for going into a classroom and reading to kids and I went to UPS school which is our charter school here and I went into a third grade classroom and I took out about a group of five kids or so, and I would read to them once a week. It was different kids every time, and I would go outside and I would bring a few books and I would read those books to them.
The service learning course that I took was to restore the Mexican mangroves in Manzanilla Jalisco Mexico. We went there to go restore the mangroves and go test how fast the ground water was being pumped out of the table, the water table from the mangroves.
There was the CCC, which was the California Conservation Core. There was the Ventura County Homeless count, there was the Ventura County Homeless court, and there was the CEDC. For my service learning project, I chose the CCC, the California Conservation core and that involved tutoring individuals who were going back for their high school diploma at the campus here on Cal State Channel Islands.
It started as a children’s literature course with Claudia Reder and in that we had to do a service-learning project where we went and read to children. I think we had to have fifteen hours a week. It expanded into science lessons and art lessons, so it wasn’t just reading storybooks to kids anymore.
I was involved with working with the Cabrillo Economic Development Corporation and they are a corporation that builds affordable homes for low-income families, migrant families or families of migrant farm workers. Specifically, there was three communities; Kalorama, Meta street and El Rio and I personally worked with the Meta Street Community and what I did for them was I went into the community and I asked community members how they felt, for example, about police officers, were they respectful? Are they responsive when they call? Is the street lighting adequate in the neighborhood? Are the fireman, do they respond quickly to phone calls? How do you guys feel in your home? How do you guys feel on the street at night? During the day? How often do you see criminal acts in the neighborhood? How often do you see drug deals going on? And it was just all about the safety of the community and like the services of the facilities in the community. We input the data into success vendors which is an online data source that CEDC uses and it lets them know what needs to be fixed in the community, how the community feels, what CEDC needs to do to help improve the community. I know just recently they were able to get money to put more lighting in the alleyway where the Meta Street apartments are. And that’s a big deal, because when there is not lighting and its dark, that’s when crime takes place.
Actually, everything I learned in the course I implemented with these kids. Like, we did an activity about poetry and we finger painted, in my classroom we finger painted and wrote a poem about our finger painting and then I took it to service learning and then I did that with the kids and it really worked and they were able to write a poem about their finger painting. We did other activities too in class, I would do the same thing and implemented with the kids I was working with.
It also taught me more because the point was to learn how to read a book but not only did I learn how to read the book to the kids but I learned how to interact with them, I learned how to manage the class. So it was sort of above and beyond what we were supposed to learn.
Just to think outside of the box in class here, we always talk about you do step one and do step two and after that you have to jot down everything you need to reference, but actually going over there and doing the hands on activity it just stretches your mind more of how hard it is to be accurate with what your doing so that like I mentioned future researchers can do or follow-up on your work.
Within the course, the concepts we were learning were what were the, what was a good book to read to the children or what was a good age appropriate book to read to the children and that how many children you could attract to the book you were reading. I was able to apply these concepts within the service learning through the whole semester of my class which was one day a week at least and I think I learn a lot more than I thought was from that class.
It was really, it was really nice to come back into the capstone course and everyone was talking about their service learning projects and I know that all of us were just impressed with how we handled it all and what we were able to learn. And even though we weren’t able to log each of our communities, we got enough information to understand what everybody was doing. Yeah, we learned a lot from each other.
Service Learning Website
Whether you are just beginning a Service Learning Course or contemplating taking a class that may have a Service Learning component the CSUCI website has a section devoted to Service Learning, which can be a great resource to you as a student. Let’s first look at how we find that section. There are a couple of ways to do that. One of them is from the Academic Programs button, or section, here on the right hand side down near the bottom of the page under Other Resources there is a link to the Service Learning website that will take you directly there. Another way that you can get there from any page in the CSUCI website is to utilize the search feature available in the upper right corner. Simply type in Service Learning, hit return and that will take you to a link that you can click on Service Learning.
The student resources section of the student learning website is a great place to start if you are considering taking a service learning course. It is essential if you are already enrolled. At the top of the page is some general information about service learning and the benefits to students who enroll in service learning courses. If you are enrolled in a course with a service learning component, in the section labeled “What you need to get started: Student Forms”, There are a number of documents that you will need to download and review.
Many of these documents will need to be filled out by you, and or your community partner then turned in to the Center for Community Engagement or given to your site supervisor before beginning any service learning. Also, there is a section with information about Live Scan and TB testing which is required for certain community partners.
Student Resource Guide
The student resource guide to service learning is designed to be a reference tool for CSUCI students participating in a service learning class. The resource guide provides you will step by step instructions about the service learning process.
In addition, the resource guide communicates the service learning vision, Basics of Service Learning, and how service learning will benefit CSUCI students.
In the step by step getting started section, you will find information about choosing a service learning placement site, filling out the service learning plan, and setting up a site orientation. We hope that this will be a meaningful, fun and Tran formative learning experience that will help you get involved, act locally, think globally, and give back to the community.
Community Partner Database
The community partner database is an excellent resource for both students considering a community partner and those verifying any special requirements, such as live scan or the CSU Volunteer Form.
The database lists all organizations already partnered with CSUCI to provide service-learning projects for students enrolled in service learning courses.
For each community partner there is information about the type of organization, its mission to the community, days and hours of operation, and some of the potential service learning opportunities.
Also of interest when choosing a community partner for a service-learning project, are demographics of the population served, issues addressed and driving directions to the location.
When choosing a community partner, be sure to check the special requirements section. If the box for finger printing is checked, the live scan process will need to be completed. If the box for CSU Volunteer Form is checked, it will need to be completed by the student and returned to the Center for Community Engagement.
Contact information for both the primary and secondary site supervisor can be found at the top of the page.
If you have any questions, contact information for the Center for Community Engagement can be found on the About Us page.
The phone number is: 805-437-8851, and the office is located in Lindero Hall
Students who are enrolled in a course with a service learning component will need to download and complete several forms. All of these forms can be found on the service learning website in the student resources section.
Student learning Plan
The student learning plan is required by all students participating in a service learning project. The student-learning plan outlines the students learning and service objectives, and it serves as a three way agreement between student, faculty and site supervisor. It is the student’s responsibility to complete the service learning plan information including the learning and service objectives and have the plan signed by the student faculty member and site supervisor as indicated.
The completed and signed student learning plan needs to be returned to the center for community engagement by the student before beginning any student service learning project.
Emergency Contact Form
The emergency contact form should be completed by the students. This form is to be given by the student to their site supervisor at the organization where they are serving.
CSU Volunteer Form
The CSU volunteer form is for students who are serving at agencies who do not provide workers compensation insurance. This application is signed by the student and the faculty member; it needs to be returned to the center for community engagement. To verify whether or not a CSU Volunteer form needs to be completed, visit the community partner database and check the special requirements section. If the box for CSU Form is checked, this form will need to be completed.
The student-tracking log is an optional tool for students to use to help keep track of their individual service hours. When students go to the community based organization site, they can fill out the log. The student log is an excellent resource for students to retain as proof of their service. At the end of the semester, the log should be turned into the professor.
Live Scan Process
Some community partners require students to complete the live scan process before beginning your service learning. Live scan refers to the process of capturing fingerprints into a digital format and can be completed on campus at the Public Safety Office.If you are unsure whether or not you need to complete the live scan process, check with your site supervisor, community partner or the center for community engagement. If you are required to complete a live scan, first obtain the live scan request form from your community partner. Both you and your community partner need to fill out both portions of the request form.
Once you have the completed paperwork, schedule an appointment by calling the Campus Police live scan phone number. There is a fee but the center for community engagement may have a fee waiver available, so check with your service learning coordinator.
When you arrive at the public safety office for your scheduled appointment, make sure you have your completed paperwork and a state issued picture ID, like your driver’s license or passport.
The live scan technician will enter the data while you wait, you will then be called back by the technician to take your fingerprints. The process takes about 30 minutes. When you are finished, you will receive two copies of the paperwork; one for your records and the other copy you give to your community partner. The results are sent electronically to the community partner and may take two to four weeks.
You may not be able to start your community service learning until your community partner receives the results, so don’t wait.