The Office of Engaged Learning
Engaged learning is at heart of what New England College strives to do and the Office of Engaged learning is constantly working to support new initiatives. Students at NEC have endless opportunities to participate in engaged learning activities as part of their course-work or on a volunteer basis. Whether teaching English to students in the Dominican Republic, helping plant gardens or build houses in New Orleans, traveling to Belize as part of a Tropical Marine Biology course, spending the night sleeping in cardboard boxes to raise awareness for the issue of homelessness as part of the ‘Gimme Shelter’ initiative, or going from museum to museum in Europe during the January term, there is always an array of opportunities to be involved off campus.
On campus, students host town hall meetings for political candidates, host a ‘Tellabration,’ bringing together local storytellers for a night of sharing work, participate in an endless array of fundraising efforts for organizations like the Jimmy Fund, PFLAG, the local girl scout troop, St. Jude’s hospital, to name a few. Each of these opportunities allows students to engage in not only their education, but also the greater community.
In collaboration with the President and the Vice President for Academic Affairs at New England College, the Office of Engaged Learning (OEL) was created in the summer of 2009. The OEL is charged with three primary functions:
• Serving as a resource to faculty, staff, and students who are interested in participating in engaged learning activities.
• Promoting engaged learning across disciplines at New England College. During this academic school year, the OEL has awarded 11 development grants to faculty members interested in creating engaged learning courses or incorporating engaged components within their courses. Some of these include:
“Public Performance in Advanced Memoir Writing”
“Volunteering in Henniker Teen Center”
“Studying Tropical Marine Biology in Belize”
“Creating Curriculum Kits for Early Childhood Education in
“Pilgrim Used Books Project: Raising Money for literacy
“Acting Workshop with Daren McCarthy, a member of the Imago
“Eleven Days in Greece: gaining awareness of global
connections and cultural diversity among world societies.”
“Bioinformatics Curricular Project”