Event Title

Engaging Minds, Building Community : Facilitating community engagement in the Rubenstein School of Enviornment and Natural Resources

Presenter Information

Kate Westdijk

Location

Peavy/Richardson Halls

Event Website

http://uenr.forestry.oregonstate.edu/

Start Date

15-3-2008 9:00 AM

End Date

15-3-2008 9:30 AM

Description

One challenge to education in environment and natural resources fields is to convey and create practical knowledge in a multidisciplinary context. RSENR faculty approach this challenge through community-based teaching and research involving community organizations locally, nationally, or internationally. According to interviews and an online survey in which the majority of RSENR faculty and staff were represented, many faculty members partner extensively with the community through their teaching, research or service. RSENR faculty members are motivated by the benefits that community engagement can provide for their students and the community. However, the consensus among faculty was that time constraints and institutional disincentives (particularly in the reappointment, promotion, and tenure (RPT) process) are a significant barrier. Given the current extent of community engagement activities, the commitment of faculty to continue this work, and the support needs identified, we recommended: 1) providing faculty support at an individual level; 2) approaching service-learning planning from the curriculum level; 3) documenting and evaluating these activities at the school level; and 4) taking action at the policy level to ensure that engaged-scholarship is valued. In 2007, as a result of this research, the RSENR created a new Office of Experiential Learning with new staff support to plan and implement programming to facilitate and sustain community-based teaching and research in the School. This office is uniquely situated as a bridge between an academic unit and two central co-curricular offices (UVM Career Services and the Office of Community-University Partnerships and Service-Learning).

Comments

Session #6: Experiential & Service Learning. Presentation for 7th Biennial Conference on University Education in Natural Resources, March 13-15, 2008, Corvallis, Oregon. Featured in the ScholarsArchive@OSU in Oregon State University. Suggested Citation: Westdijk, K. 2008. Engaging minds, building community: research and recommendations for facilitating community engagement in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources. UENR 7th Biennial Conference, ScholarsArchive at Oregon State University. http://hdl.handle.net/1957/8170

 
Mar 15th, 9:00 AM Mar 15th, 9:30 AM

Engaging Minds, Building Community : Facilitating community engagement in the Rubenstein School of Enviornment and Natural Resources

Peavy/Richardson Halls

One challenge to education in environment and natural resources fields is to convey and create practical knowledge in a multidisciplinary context. RSENR faculty approach this challenge through community-based teaching and research involving community organizations locally, nationally, or internationally. According to interviews and an online survey in which the majority of RSENR faculty and staff were represented, many faculty members partner extensively with the community through their teaching, research or service. RSENR faculty members are motivated by the benefits that community engagement can provide for their students and the community. However, the consensus among faculty was that time constraints and institutional disincentives (particularly in the reappointment, promotion, and tenure (RPT) process) are a significant barrier. Given the current extent of community engagement activities, the commitment of faculty to continue this work, and the support needs identified, we recommended: 1) providing faculty support at an individual level; 2) approaching service-learning planning from the curriculum level; 3) documenting and evaluating these activities at the school level; and 4) taking action at the policy level to ensure that engaged-scholarship is valued. In 2007, as a result of this research, the RSENR created a new Office of Experiential Learning with new staff support to plan and implement programming to facilitate and sustain community-based teaching and research in the School. This office is uniquely situated as a bridge between an academic unit and two central co-curricular offices (UVM Career Services and the Office of Community-University Partnerships and Service-Learning).

http://digitalcommons.usu.edu/cuenr/7thBiennial/Sessions/21