The St. Olaf Community Scholars Program is an opportunity for 8-10 students to engage in meaningful community service, learn about and discuss critical social issues, develop leadership skills, and discern personal vocational interests while participating in cohort-based reflection. The goal of the program is to foster a sense of community, purpose, self-awareness and personal growth. The program will take place from October 1st through May 4th, excluding breaks and Interim.
Through this program, you will explore and contribute to issues such as education, environmental sustainability, public health, youth empowerment, and poverty reduction. You will develop practical skills that will complement your liberal arts education and prepare you to be a change agent. Community Scholars will learn from and with other civically engaged students, faculty, community leaders, alumni and Center for Experiential Learning professionals.
Program Components and Requirements
Community Service/Civic Engagement
Volunteer an average of at least 2-3 hours per week (25 hours in the fall and 35 in the spring) with an organization or project that is contributing to the common good. While students are allowed to volunteer with more than one community project, the emphasis of the program is on regular service with one organization or project.
Students who participate in the following programs are eligible:
- Volunteering through Volunteer Network or Honor House Program
- Community-based work study
- Local service-orientated internship
- Independent community project
- Students who do not yet have a project are still eligible to participate. The following resources will be helpful for identifying an appropriate community service project:
Biweekly Dinner Conversations
Meet with the other Community Scholars and student facilitators to reflect on your community experiences, discuss social issues and explore vocational and personal growth. Meetings will take place for one hour on either on Monday, Tuesday or Wednesday evening.
- Each student will have the opportunity to help facilitate at least one of these conversations
- Possible conversation topics: What is community service and civic engagement and why are they important?; What are your ideals?; What actions matter?; work/life balance; career and vocational exploration; strengths and weaknesses inventory; joys and challenges of service
- Student Facilitators: Geoff Delperdang ’12 and Amber Hesse ’12
Join with Students in Service AmeriCorps program members and other engaged students on campus to learn about community issues and approaches to social change and participate vocational exploration activities with Piper Center staff, community leaders, alumni, faculty, and program directors
- These seminars will likely be held during Community Time (11:30 AM-12:30 PM) on Thursdays
- Possible seminar topics include: dimensions of service and civic engagement; understanding your strengths and transferable skills; careers for the common good; connections between service and political engagement; facets of community leadership; specific social issues (the complexity of poverty, healthcare inequality, education and youth empowerment); skill building for social change
Participate in a half-day retreat at the beginning of the year in preparation for the program. Retreat will include team-building activities, a Northfield Tour and a catered dinner. Tentative date for the retreat is Sunday, October 9th from 2:00- 7:00pm
- Sophomores and Juniors
- Participants are expected to participate for the full length of the program
- Receive a $200 scholarship ($100 awarded at the end of each semester after successful completion of program requirements)
- Students who are interested in completing a 300 hour term of service in one calendar year are also eligible to apply to earn a $1,132 AmeriCorps Education Award through the Students in Service program
- Develop practical skills that will complement your liberal arts education and prepare you to make a difference
- community leadership skills through direct involvement with the community
- critical thinking skills through the synthesis of experiential learning and academic interests
- communication skills through engagement with diverse populations, participation in reflection activities, including the partial facilitation of at least one Community Scholar Conversation
- Gain valuable experience in the nonprofit and social change sector
- Reflect and learn from other engaged peers
- Network with community leaders, students leaders, and alumni
- Explore vocational and career interests
- Utilize the resources and expertise of the Piper Center staff to extend your Community Scholars year through future experiential learning
Northfield Connect: Thursday, September 15, 2011
Info Session: Tuesday, September 20, 2011 (4:00- 4:30pm in Tomson 200)
Application Deadline: Wednesday, September 28, 2011 by Midnight
Applicants Notified: Friday, September 30, 2011
Orientation Retreat: Sunday, October 9, 2011 from 2:00- 7:00pm (tentative)
This proccess will be available after the information session
1.) Save a copy of your resume to a common location (please highlight relevant community service experiences).
2.) Save a copy of your application to a common location.
3.) Apply via OleRecruiting - login via the directions on the screen.
4.) Click on "Documents" on the blue bar, click on "Add New" - name your resume "Community Scholars" and upload it as a "resume". Upload your "Application" as an "Other Document" titled "Community Scholars Application".
5.) Click on "Employers" on the blue bar, type in "St. Olaf College" on the "Keywords" box, click "Search".
6.) Scroll down and select "St. Olaf College" - click on "Available Position" in the center of the screen. Select "Community Scholars Program".
7.) On the right hand side, click on "Apply". Select your "Resume" & application "Other Document" - click on "Submit".
Program Coordinator, Nate Jacobi (firstname.lastname@example.org), Piper Center