Meet Casey Cantrelle, a second year graduate student in the Higher Education Administration program and graduate assistant for CCELL. She is graduating in May and looking forward to working so she can begin changing the lives of college students.
How (you may ask) can you gain community service experience while still gaining course credits? The answer is simple… Service-Learning!
LSU’s Center for Community Engagement, Learning, and Leadership, or CCELL, facilitates service-learning and community-engaged research with university faculty, students, administrators, and community partners.
What is Service-Learning? Service-Learning is an educational experience integrating community service with an academic class to enhance learning and address critical community needs. Through organized service activities with community organizations or individuals, students are able to gain knowledge directly connected to the learning goals of the academic course they are taking.
- Kinesiology students plan and implement recreational programs for children with and without disabilities, as well as lead senior citizens in fun exercises to promote active lifestyles.
- Graphic design, English, and PR students develop publicity materials for non-profits.
- Engineering, English, geology, math, music, sociology, Spanish, accounting, and chemistry classes visit K-12 classrooms to tutor, perform science demonstrations, and even design playgrounds.
Taking a service-learning class is beneficial for the student as well as the community; students get:
- An opportunity to apply academic knowledge and skills in a real way,
- Increased retention of course material,
- An enhanced resume for graduate school or the job market,
- A way to meet interesting people, and
- A chance to make a difference in the community.
CCELL is a unit of Academic Affairs that strives to develop and promote mutually beneficial campus community partnerships built on integrity, respect, and equity. Each year, over 90 faculty member develop 160+ classes in 40 different LSU departments. There are service-learning opportunities for every student at LSU.
You’re probably thinking, “This sounds great! How can I enroll?” That’s the easy part. Enrolling in service-learning is the same as enrolling in any other course on campus. Access the listing of “Service-Learning Courses” via CCELL’s website (www.lsu.edu/ccell) and select the “Service-Learning Courses” link on the left-hand side; note the section of the course you wish to enroll in and then submit a scheduling request through My LSU.