Engaged Learning

Students: The process of becoming a good man and good citizen at Hampden-Sydney begins in the classroom. The liberal arts curriculum provides you with opportunities to explore social, economic, political, and moral issues; in class you may begin to consider how you can be involved in productive ways of addressing these issues. Engaged learning complements that approach with structured experience outside the classroom. 

One current example is the inter-disciplinary course Good Men Good Citizens: Philanthropy in Theory and Practice.  Taught by Dr. Saranna Thornton, the course explores ideas and practices of philanthropy through course readings and lectures.  In addition, all students are placed in internships in local non-profits.  Through a grant from the Learning by Giving Foundation, students in the class receive $10,000 to grant to local non-profits at the end of the course.  They work with their community partners to develop grant proposals and then serve as a foundation board in deciding how to award the course funds.

Faculty:  Involvement with real-life problems in local communities gives students the opportunity to integrate classroom-based learning with experiential learning. Through class lectures and reading assignments, community service placements and guided reflection, students can engage fully and creatively with their subject.  In addition, students learn about civic responsibility, and communities are supported in addressing local needs.

Faculty wishing to integrate community engagement into their teaching and research can receive support through the Civic Engagement program.  Assistance with community placements, links to service-learning resources, and funding are available.  Small grants will be awarded in late 2012 for course or research project development.  For more information, please contact Karin Gollin at kgollin@hsc.edu.