In-person community engagement postponed during COVID-19
Our work in community engagement is driven by two goals: student learning and community impact. Typically, this takes the form of volunteering, internships and research with local nonprofit and government organizations in order to improve educational, health, economic and environmental outcomes. But how does this change when we find ourselves in a pandemic? Because we care about the health of our students and our community, but we still want to do work that meets meaningful community needs, we need to change how we do our work for this semester. The answer, simply, is that we shift from doing this work in-person to doing it remotely.
For the Fall 2020 semester, in accordance with the guidance provided by the Safer Stetson Task Force on Off-Campus Educational Programs, all in-person community engagement activities are prohibited. During this time, the Center for Community Engagement will neither support nor promote any in-person community engagement activities, nor will the CCE approve any “service hours” logged into GivePulse that are completed in-person.
With the uncertainty of COVID-19‘s spread across the world, we anticipated that this might happen, so we‘ve been working closely with our community partners since last spring to identify and develop more remote volunteer, internship and research opportunities for this semester. You can find those opportunities by subscribing to the CCE Weekly email, by going to GivePulse, or by setting up a meeting with one of our team members who can discuss the opportunities with you.
We know the tremendous benefits of in-person community engagement, both for our students and for our partners. We hope that we are able to resume in-person community engagement starting this spring. To that end, we will revisit this policy prior to the Spring 2021 semester to determine if it should be continued, modified or eliminated.
Any students, faculty, staff or partners who have questions about this temporary policy change can reach out to us at (386) 822-8713 or firstname.lastname@example.org.