Service Learning

SERVICE LEARNING PROGRAM

The Work-It-Out Pilot Project (WIO) SERVICE LEARNING PROGRAM is designed to provide a structured learning experience for students that combine community service with preparation and reflection. Students in institutions of higher learning are paired with youth that have left high school without a diploma, to engage in community-based services in response

to community identified concerns and learn about
the context in which services are provided. Students increased their understanding of the connection between their service and their academic coursework, and roles as citizens. This year, WIO partnered with the University of Washington – School of Nursing to offer service learning opportunities to university students. Seven (7) students selected our school to conduct research on best practices in health & wellness centers and schools within the community, and each quarter built upon the work of the former students. The end result was development of a high quality Wellness Center at WIO.

Likewise, Seattle University Albers School of Business and Economics partnered with WIO to offer service learning opportunities to 15 MBA students to volunteer their expertise and service to design a state of the art GreenLab for WIO. When the MBA class started working with us, they quickly realized that there was the beginning of a perfectly good greenhouse onsite. Years of neglect had left the structure non-functioning and

the grounds overgrown. After many meetings to clarify the vision for a multi-purpose GreenLab, the MBA class rolled up their sleeves and went right to work. Over the course of six months passionate members of the local community, along with the Seattle University MBA class, WIO students and staff, helped turn a decaying, nonfunctional green house and grounds into a high quality functioning GreenLab facility and classroom that acts as a valuable resource and powerful learning tool for hands-on experiences for students.

How we helped in 2011: The University of Washington – School of Nursing and Seattle University Albers School of Business and Economics, partnered with WIO to offer twenty-two (22) student the opportunity for community-based service learning
at WIO. Overall, service learning students provided administrative support, grant writing, conducted research of best practices, developed tools and protocols for admission, and provided leadership and hands-on technical/manual skills to develop a high quality Wellness Center and GreenLab. All participants experienced personal growth, better understanding
of the challenges facing neighborhoods, low income communities and students that leave high school without a diploma. All participants better understand the nature of community service in the context of building healthy communities through civic engagement and service learning. At the end of the day, all students increased their understanding of health, wellness and fitness issues, connecting to outdoor hands-on farming/ agricultural learning experiences in areas of nutrition, rain water collection, planting, weeding, and mulching, composting, environmental and organic gardening as a result of their work together.

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