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Through the College’s robust Service Learning program, which enhances classroom teaching with field experience opportunities, students gain real-world experience while helping local nonprofits meet community needs. In the last three years, over 2,000 students in nearly 150 classes led by almost 40 faculty members have provided over 20,000 hours of service to 50 local agencies that serve children, adults and families.
Specific projects have included graphic design students partnering with the Dutchess County SPCA to produce marketing materials, and psychology students creating memory boards for residents at a local rehabilitation center and nursing home.
Students gain knowledge that’s directly connected to the student learning outcomes of the course being taken. Likewise, the academic context enriches the service experience by raising questions about real-world concerns and providing a forum for probing these concerns in-depth.
Students who participate in service learning often report that engaging with the community in this way is a transformative, highly impactful experience that enhances their classroom learning while instilling a sense of civic responsibility.