Campus News

2015 Service-Learning Teaching Excellence Awards

Kris Irwin

Sponsored by the Office of Service-Learning, this award recognizes faculty who have developed innovative academic service-learning courses that integrate relevant community service with academic coursework to enhance student learning, develop civic responsibility and address community needs.

Kris Irwin, a senior public service associate in the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, developed the first designated service-learning course in the forestry school.

In “Foundations of Environmental Education,” students partner with community and government organizations such as Athens-Clarke County Stormwater Education and Sandy Creek Park to create environmental education plans.

Irwin also regularly teaches a course in “Natural Resource Management for Teachers” and has taught international service-learning courses in Costa Rica, including a new spring break course about tropical reforestation.

Irwin previously served as a senior scholar for the Office of Service-Learning in 2008-09 and helped develop a faculty toolkit for creating service-learning protocols courses at UGA Costa Rica.

Michael Marshall, a professor and area chair of photography in the Lamar Dodd School of Art, has engaged undergraduate and graduate photography students in service-learning courses since 2010 by partnering with communities across Georgia through UGA’s Archway Partnership as well as locally to implement documentary photography and digital storytelling skills with the community.

Marshall’s service-learning courses are designed to promote artistic, academic and civic learning through community photography.

A former student wrote that Marshall’s service-learning course “took me out of my comfort zone, requiring creative problem solving and improvisation … (and) has inspired a desire to become a better citizen and pursue the ideals of my work on a local level as well as in my photography.”

Marshall previously was recognized as a Service-Learning Fellow in 2011-2012.