Below are examples of Macalester's community-based learning courses sorted by issue area.
American Studies-Schools and Prisons (Professor Aguilar-San Juan): This course provides a real-world urban context to investigate racism and structural inequalities in solcial policy. Students worked extensively withnonprofit criminal justice organizations to investigate the school-to-prison pipeline, wherein children are funneled out of schools and into the criminal justice system.
Economics-Economics of Poverty (Professor Moe): Students used economic theory and empirical research to analyze the causes and potential strategies to overcome poverty and inequality. Course components included working with local nonprofits in a specific interest area and meeting with local professionals on issues such as homelessness.
Media & Cultural Studies-Advanced Topic Seminar (Pofessor Kim): Students worked in teams to create new media for nonprofit partners and presented their work at a public scholarship event. Community partners included Juxtaposition Arts, Centro, Patrick's Cabaret, and FIRE (Foundation for Immigrant Resources and Education).
Environment & Sustainability
Biology- Resoration Ecology (Professor Dosch): As a class, students worked to restore the Katherine Ordway Natural History Study Area, an ongoing project of the College that seeks to reinvigorate this 17-acre field station.
Environmental Studies - Senior Seminar (Professors Brandtmiller & Hansen): Students investigated on- and off-campus policies and practices around the concept of zero waste. Groups analyzed compostig, recycling, and life cycle issues (paper, computers, e-waste, and hand dryers) within Macalester and for community partners.
Environmental Studies - Sustainable Development/Global Future (Professor Phadke): Students researched and worked directly with local organizations that handle international development, pinpointing strengths and weaknesses of specific development projects. Students also researched and then invested $250 in each of three microfinance organizations.
Health & Wellness
Biology/Community and Global Health-Biological Paradigms (Professor Chatterjea): Students completed a health assessment with senior citizens, working cooperatively with the Macalester-Groveland Seniors association.
Psychology - Distress/Dysfunction/Disorder (Professor Strauss): Students had the option to complete 20 hours of service with a communtiy organization and write a culminating paper.
Immigrants & Refugees
Hispanic and Latin American Studies-Stories of U.S. Latinos (Professor Adamuz): Students worked with community partner Centro to digitally document Latina/o history, covering such subjects as family, social and economic struggles, individual aspirtations and spiritual needs.
Anthropology - People and Cultures of Latin America (Professor Gonzalez): Students prepared exhibition materials for Days of the Dead, a holiday celebrated in Mexico and by Latinos living in the United States and Canada. Class members worked with Centro to create artistic and other materials for a community cultural gathering.
Political Science - Civic Engagement (Chuck Green) Fellowship (Professor Dolan): After a competitive selection process, students in this class researched community issues, connected with community organizations, and subsequently completed a full summer of work with their respective organizations on a project of interest.
Geography-Transportation Geography (Professor Smith): Students completed community-based research on issues of transportation and equity.
Youth & Tutoring
Educational Studies-Urban Education (Professor Kurth-Schai): In this first year course, students worked as K-4 classroom assistants as they studied issues of educational parity.
Anthropology-Senior Seminar (Professor Shandy): Students mentored and supported students from Great River School--an urban public charter school--as they completed ethnography projects.
Other Interest Areas
Art & Art History- Renaissance Art (Professor Lanzoni): Students presented original research on Renaissance artists to docent volunteers for the Minneapolis Institute of Arts. Individual books on each of 11 artists were compiled into one reference text and presented as a gift to the MIA.
Classics/Religious Studies- Studies in Archeology, Dead Sea Scrolls (Professor Goldman): Professor Goldman organized a 5-campus competition of student research on the Dead Sea Scrolls. Selected students presented research findings to the public and Science Musuem, and all class members toured the Dead Sea Scroll museum exhibit with an international scholar in the field.
Theatre and Dance - Hip Hop Performance (Professor Waters): Students collaborated in hip hop performances, artist guests, and work with community theatres.