Grants fund community-engaged learning curricula

The Office of Engagement Initiatives (OEI) recently awarded Engaged Curriculum Grants to 19 teams of faculty and community partners that are developing community-engaged learning courses, majors and minors across the university.

This year’s funded projects involve 52 Cornell faculty and staff from 36 departments and 11 schools and colleges. Community partners come from seven countries; 14 projects are based in New York state.

“OEI’s main objective is to make high-quality community-engaged learning accessible to every Cornell undergraduate student,” said Anna Sims Bartel, associate director of community-engaged curricula and practice in OEI. “A great way to expand that reach is by increasing the opportunities students have to engage with communities as part of their academic studies. We’re excited to work with this year’s grantees as they plan and develop new curricula and continue to refine what they already offer.”

Cornell currently has more than 270 unique and cross-listed community-engaged learning courses, and 84 majors have a community-engaged learning option. Since launching in 2015, OEI’s grant programs have helped increase community-engaged learning curricular options by 74%, and undergraduate enrollment in these courses has increased 93%.

OEI and grantees are committed to making these community-engaged learning opportunities available over the long term. Grant applications require that teams have a sustainability plan beyond the terms of the funding.

“Community-engaged learning is often a life-changing experience for students, as they develop a greater sense of agency and experience in taking action to address issues of public concern,” Bartel said. “We want that to be a hallmark of the Cornell education – not for two years or even 10 years, but for generations for come.”  

Funded 2020-21 Engaged Curriculum Grant projects:

Ashlee McGandy is content strategist in the Office of Engagement Initiatives.

Read the story in the Cornell Chronicle.

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