Elements Of Civic Engagement

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Civic engagement is a fundamentally important issue as it is an essential component of a large number of universities’ educational experience. The main aim of this essay is to describe and evaluate the integral elements of any civic engagement program. The first section will deal with the meaning of civic engagement, its objectives and the characteristics of a successful civic engagement program according to published studies and research articles. The second section will evaluate civic engagement programs that have already been implemented as well as my personal experience with civic engagement. Finally, based on the previous evaluations, a proposal will be presented to further develop a more successful and productive civic engagement program…show more content…
Firstly, civic engagement programs’ main goal is to create a generation of self-aware leaders that are able to think critically to solve communal problems. According to Light (2011), there is a shift to a new model for leadership in higher education where the focus is not on nurturing only a handful of breakthrough “future stars” but rather an approach that applies the assumption that everyone has the capacity to participate and contribute to something larger than themselves; this model of leadership helps support students to develop as active leaders that directly address social issues and creates a generation of positive change…show more content…
A comprehensive civic engagement program should be implemented that organizes and develops civic engagement for the student community. The program should be funded by the university and it would partner with the John D. Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Civic Engagement. The civic engagement program would be led a staff of students which is a critical component of a successful civic engagement program as it allows them the opportunity to develop as well as makes their voices heard. The program would be concerned with all the forms of service-learning on campus which includes courses, internships and initiatives. The students would co-design community-based learning courses with professors in order to gain the maximum benefit and provide a fresh approach to the educational material which marks their role in the Faculty-Student Partnerships level of the Pyramid of Engagement. They would also select the organizations that the program would partner with in order to provide a wide array of internships to students who are interested in community development. The program would also provide support and funding for initiatives and projects started by students so that they can develop and have a positive impact on society which would mark the participants as Engaged Scholars. The John D. Gerhart Center for Philanthropy and Civic Engagement would provide the necessary expertise, research and evaluation for the
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