Service-Learning in Memphis, TN
The Honors Program at the University of South Dakota developed a service-learning trip to Memphis, TN partnering with Serve901, a local community engagement non-profit. Beyond service-learning's traditional goals (civic engagement, enhanced student learning) this trip served as a way to develop a sense of community among first-year students in the Honors Program. Prior to departure, participants engaged in four meetings to understand the context of the social issues Memphis is facing and foster a sense of community among each other. Participants were able to study the way in which they view the world through the lens of the social issue of equity in education hands-on while working at a local charter school and after school program for children of refugees. Following each day of service, students experienced the culture of Memphis, TN and also engaged in meaningful reflection about the day's experiences. Participants on the trip reported a higher understanding of equity, the role of civic engagement, and their ability to make an impact in the community. Furthermore, trip participants reported a higher perceived sense of community in the Honors Program, found a meaningful connection with at least one other participant, and meaningful connection with a member from the Honors staff.
Sump, Anna Elizabeth; Lukkes, Savannah; Ostby, Cienna; Macy, James; Christenson, Caleb; Feiner, Alexandra; Bonestroo, Karynna; Eggum, Michael; Vlasman, Tia; Hawks, Ruby; and Ahrenholtz, Michaela, "Service-Learning in Memphis, TN" (2020). IdeaFest. 119.