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/uploadedImages/academics/servlearn/waterdroplogo.jpgSERVICE LEARNING

SERVICE LEARNING PROGRAM
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PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

Service Learning at Raritan Valley Community College involves students in organized community service that addresses local needs, while developing their academic skills, sense of civic responsibility and commitment to the community. Students enroll in courses designated as service learning, perform community service as part of their coursework and receive academic credit. Students reflect on their experiences through journals, essays, research papers, group discussions and in-class presentations. Service learning is a requirement as well as an optional component in numerous disciplines across the curriculum.

PROGRAM PARTICIPATION

The Program began in the Spring of 1993. Since then it has witnessed dramatic growth and has expanded with increasing numbers of students, faculty and community partnerships.  Annual program participation now includes:

  • 800 + students enroll in service learning courses 
  • 70 faculty members and courses offer learning opportunities 
  • 250 community organizations provide service placements 
  • 30,000 hours of service are provided to the community 

Raritan Valley Community College is a national leader in the service learning movement.  Among the many honors received is the prestigious 2009 President’s Award for Community Service from the Corporation for National and Community Service.  The Corporation for National and Community Service, which administers the annual Honor Roll award, recognized the college and its students in the category of “Service to Youth from Disadvantaged Circumstances” for their impact on issues from poverty and homelessness to illiteracy.  RVCC was the only community college, along with five other colleges and universities, to receive this designation.

In helping disadvantaged populations, the service learning students served as tutors for at-risk middle and high school students and assisted with ESL classes. They planned and delivered workshops on career and college planning at homeless shelters and collaborated with staff at mental health and developmental agencies to improve service learning for students with disabilities. The RVCC service learning program also led a regional network among community colleges in New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania to advance service learning initiatives for disadvantaged populations.

“Congratulations to Raritan Valley Community College and its students for their dedication to service and commitment to improving their local communities,” said Patrick Corvington, the Corporation’s CEO. “Our nation’s students are a critical part of the equation and vital to our efforts to tackle the most persistent challenges we face.  They have achieved impactful results and demonstrated the value of putting knowledge into practice to help renew America through service.”

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