FAQ

How does this relate to my class?
You are getting an opportunity to put into action what you have read about or discussed in class so that you may gain a deeper understanding of your acquired knowledge.

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What if I don't have time to fit this in my schedule?
Even though this is not a "traditional" assignment, it should be treated just like the other requirements for the course, as you would set aside a certain amount of time each week to fulfill those. We have a variety of options that cover weekdays, nights and weekends that should fit your schedule. If none do, then the professor and the Service-Learning TA will work with you to find one that does (if applicable) or you are free to withdraw from the course (if S-L is required). If S-L is an option, then you may choose another option.

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Do we get reimbursed for travel?
No. (Unless the professor has set that up on their own) This is a requirement for class the same as any book they are required to purchase. Think of this as if you were assigned to purchase another book for the class instead. All of the sites we partner with are within walking distance or are accessible by the T.

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Can I use as my S-L placement an organization I am already serving with?
It depends on the course.
A) If the course has set placements, then most likely no because the site and roles were specifically chosen to fit the learning objectives of the course, and this experience is also intended to be shared by the group in some capacity. But in rare cases a student might have real scheduling conflicts, or might be taking multiple S-L courses with conflicting service options, in that case you and the professor should discuss this to determine the best course of action.

B) If the course is flexible in having students identify their own placements and/or roles, then it may be possible, but the professor and/or the S-L TA will require all contact information and a description of their service role to ensure it fits with your courses goals and is appropriate S-L placement (e.g., nonprofit, instead of for profit).

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What if I have to do S-L for two classes?
Service you engage in through one class can only count towards another course if the service role you are in will allow you to learn about the course content for both courses. Then you can direct your reflection towards each individual class. If the service role does not relate to both courses, then you will have to serve in two separate organizations or roles, because otherwise, it would defeat the purpose of this being a service and learning experience.

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What if I start my service and don't like it?
Given the fact that this will be a short-term experience for you, it's unlikely that it will be too awful to continue. Before you decide to quit, consider whether it will give you information that would be useful for your course (or maybe for life). Talk over your issues with your professor and or Service-Learning Teaching Assistant (if applicable).

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We are required to fulfill 10, 15, 20, or 30 hours. Am I done once my hours are met?
No. Although we recommend a minimum of 2 hours a week for the semester, you should not think of this requirement in terms of the hours. Instead this is a semester long commitment to an organization that needs your support and a semester long assignment to learn. You will serve with the organization every week from the designated first week (ideally the 2nd or 3rd week of class) through to the last week of classes. Also not all service commitments will be the same because the needs/roles at each organization differ. It is preferred that you fulfill a minimum of 2 hours a week so that you are not leaving practically right after arriving, but some organizations may only request assistance for 1.5 hours a week, while others may ask for support in with a 4 hour weekly shift. The focus should always be on the quality of the experience over the quantity of time, but a greater quantity of time engaging with, supporting and learning from the organization and clients can help to ensure that your experience is of higher quality.

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Do we all members of our group have to serve at the same time & day together?
No. Some of you may end up serving together, but otherwise, you will only be expected to work together as a group in reflecting on and helping each other learn from the experience, and then representing your shared/similar experiences (and in some cases the findings from your project) with the organization and community to the rest of the class.

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Can I create my own S-L experience outside of the designated classes utilizing S-L?

Since S-L is distinct from community service because of the direct link to the academic coursework, S-L is set up to be facilitated by an instructor and therefore S-L opportunities cannot be created on an individual basis. You are encouraged to look into our current offerings in and outside of your major to find courses utilizing S-L. We also encourage you to let us or a professor know if you think s/he should consider incorporating S-L into their course.

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