The Office of Service-Learning has selected nine faculty members for participation in its Service-Learning Fellows program.
This program provides an opportunity for faculty members from a range of disciplines to integrate academic service-learning into their professional practice. Fellows meet regularly throughout the academic year and receive an award of up to $2,500 to develop or implement a proposed service-learning project. Academic service-learning—one way for students to fulfill UGA’s experiential learning graduation requirement—integrates organized service activities that meet community-identified needs into academic courses as a way to enhance understanding of academic content, teach civic responsibility and provide benefit to the community.
Some 135 faculty from 16 of UGA’s schools and colleges, public service and outreach units and the Augusta University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership have participated in the program since it was established in 2006. Participants create diverse service-learning projects that pair students with partners locally, across the state of Georgia and throughout the world to address community issues such as youth development, economic development, food insecurity, health access and literacy.
“It’s inspiring to see how every year, faculty are creating innovative community-based learning experiences for students, and what a positive impact these projects have on partners UGA serves,” said Shannon O. Wilder, director of the Office of Service-Learning.
The Fellows, their respective academic fields and proposed projects are:
• Collette Chapman-Hilliard, assistant professor, counseling and human development services department, College of Education.
Chapman-Hilliard will incorporate a social justice and advocacy service-learning project engaging graduate students in the Mental Health Counseling program with organizations supporting marginalized communities, including curricular development and needs assessments.
• Elizabeth M. Grant, assistant clinical professor, School of Law.
As part of the Public Interest Practicum clinic, Grant plans to work with law students and partners to develop and incorporate graphic arts to help explain legal information for unrepresented litigants in Athens and enhance law students’ communication skills.
• Jessica L. Heywood, externship clinician, Washington Semester Program, School of Law.
For D.C. Semester in Practice, Heywood will work with students and partners in exploring public service as an element of professional identity in the legal field. Related to this, students will explore the critical role public service plays in meeting the needs of underserved populations.
• Candice Hollenbeck, lecturer, marketing department, Terry College of Business.
Hollenbeck’s students in MARK4600S (Integrated Marketing and Brand Communications) will work with nonprofit organizations and local businesses to identify target markets, design campaigns and create and disseminate messages in support of their organization’s missions.
• Melissa Scott Kozak, senior lecturer, human development and family science department, College of Family and Consumer Sciences.
Kozak plans to have students in her Family Life Education Methodology course partner with UGA Cooperative Extension to develop, facilitate and evaluate programs based on identified community needs.
• Suzanne H. Lester, assistant professor, family medicine, AU/UGA Medical Partnership.
Lester plans to enhance and assess partnerships and pedagogy supporting medical student and community interactions in the Community and Population Health two-year curriculum.
• Magdalena Matuskova, lecturer, Romance languages department, Franklin College of Arts and Sciences.
Matuskova is developing a new service-learning course on Spanish-English medical and health care interpreting, in which students will develop skills through taking part in interpreting in health education and clinical settings.
• Jill Stefaniak, assistant professor, career and information studies department, College of Education.
Stefaniak will engage graduate students in providing performance evaluations for nonprofit organizations locally and beyond, in her EDIT 7350 course on e-Learning Evaluation and Assessment.
• Zion Tse, associate professor, School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, College of Engineering.
Students in Tse’s CSEE4320 Mechatronics course will work with UGA’s Facilities Management Division to better inspect campus rooftops and buildings using unmanned aerial vehicles.
The Office of Service-Learning is jointly supported by the Office of the Vice President for Instruction and the Office of the Vice President for Public Service and Outreach. More information on the Service-Learning Fellows Program is available at www.servicelearning.uga.edu.