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Madison

JJ a m e es s m a d diiss o n uunni ivveerrs si itty y p pa ar re ennt t r re el la at itoi on ns s n en we ws lselte t tetre r Volume 3, Issue 3 i n s i d e Community service Learning (cont. page 1) page 2 n Family Weekend 2010 n Family Connection performing Arts Center page 3 n Parents? Top 10 summer Enrollment page 4 n Health Center Encouraging students to be good citizens page 5 n QuikBILL Updates n Veterans Benefits parents calendar page 6 n Endowments

?In the final analysis, it is not what you do for children but what you have taught them to do for themselves that make them successful human beings.?

? An n LA n d e r s Office of Parent Relations 220 University Blvd., MSC 3605 Harrisonburg, VA 22807 (540) 568-3190 www.jmu.edu/parents/

F a m i l y C o n n e C t i o n

The bridge that Community Service-Learning built

The experiences that link service to learning also link JMU to the community By Jan Gillis (?07) Twenty years ago two visionary educators seized a chance to launch a program at James Madison University that would entwine the institution with its community, transform its students into enlightened citizens and put world-changing opportunities within the grasp of scores of young people. Since its inception, Community Service-Learning has become a special part of the Madison Experience, an avenue of learning with dynamic impact. A commitment to involvement In 1985 as the university reviewed its general education program, ?there was an emphasis on innovation, doing new things,? says Ann Myers, head of JMU?s Department of Social Work. While Madison students had long had a history of volunteer service in the local community, Myers, a social work professor at the time, and sociology professor Cecil Bradfield saw an opportunity to develop a program that had at its core a value near and dear to their hearts. ?Both of us had a very strong commitment to the idea that a university needed to have involvement in the community,? she says. In the spring of 1988, JMU?s pilot service-learning program began. ?There were about six agencies and 75 students in the program, and we just continued to grow,? says Myers. service with learning objectives The early growth was a reflection of hard work on the part of Bradfield and Myers. Although each professor had worked with community agencies in volunteer efforts, they now faced a new challenge -- introducing a formal program that established and integrated course and learning objectives into community service. ?The difference with service learning is the connection that is made with very specific courses and concepts. While volunteer and community service are highly valued, there is little benefit to students in terms of their academic application of concepts to courses unless someone is helping them make that connection,? says Myers. JMU students visit generations Crossing as part of the 2009 Alternative spring Break program. CONTINUED ON PAGE 2 >>>

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