|"I would like to reiterate that the community experience was a much better approximation of real world work than anything a student gets in a regular classroom setting. Truly, working with the LFH was a great experience." More student testimonials.
"Apply for an ACE grant! Bring the community into the classroom and vice versa." More faculty advice.
Academic Community Engagement Course Information
Resources for Assessing Student Learning in Community Engagement and Study Abroad Courses. Website.
Curry School Partnerships. Webpage
The University of Virginia is committed to serving the public good. Each year, U.Va. students contribute over 300,000 hours of community service. For the past three years, the University has been recognized at the national level for its service achievements by the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The Jefferson Public Citizens program was designed to enhance the student experience by engaging students in curricular and co-curricular public service.
Deadline: Monday, April 16, 2012.
Award notifications will be sent to applicants by the end of May 2012.
DOWNLOAD CALL FOR ACE PROPOSALS (PDF) provides background and detailed information on the ACE grants.
- 2012-13 Academic Community Engagement (ACE) Faculty Fellow Grants
To encourage student learning and foster innovative academically-based public service universitywide, the Office of the Executive Vice President and
Provost announces funds to support faculty development of academically-based community engagement
Awards range from $5K to $9K.
Sheet and Application (PDF)
- 2012-13 Academic Community Engagement (ACE) Course Assistant
The ACE Course Assistant Awards are intended to expand capacity of faculty
to offer public community engagement experiences in their classes. These
awards are funds for graduate or undergraduate students to provide academic
community engagement courses with ongoing logistical and classroom support
throughout the semester.
Awards range from $2K to $3K.
Sheet and Application (PDF)
- 2012-13 University Community Academic Partnership Assistance Awards
The University Community Academic Partnership (UCAP) Assistance Awards provide
faculty with funds to advance university community partnerships necessary
for student academic learning experiences. These funds are intended to
enhance partnership capacity not covered by course assistant funds or
faculty fellow funds.
Awards are up to $1K.
Cover Sheet and Application (PDF)
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2011 Academic Community Engagement Award Faculty Recipients
- Faculty Name: Andrew Kaufman
School: Curry School of Education; College of Arts and Sciences
Title: "Books Behind Bars: Life, Literature and Community Leadership"
Course Number: RUTR 3340
Community Partner: Beaumont Juvenile Correctional Center; Dr. Michael Ito, Superintendent
In this course students grapple in a profound and personal way with timeless human questions: Who am I? Why am I here? How should I live? They do this, in part, by facilitating discussions about short masterpieces of Russian literature with residents at a maximum security juvenile correctional center.
- Faculty Name: Teresa Culver
School of Engineering and Applied Sciences
Community-based Stormwater Monitoring and Management
Course Number: CE 4210
Rivanna River Basin Commission; Leslie Middleton, Executive Director
This project-based course focuses on the management and monitoring of stormwater quantity and quality in our local watershed. While teaming with local watershed managers, students will study the impacts, environmental goals, regulatory requirements, and the management and design alternatives for runoff, especially from urban areas.
- Faculty Name: Mary Voorhees, Rebecca Berlin, Tina Stanton-Chapman
Curry School of Education
Foundations of Teaching Young Children (Birth to Five)
Course Number: EDIA 2011-1
Charlottesville City Schools Preschool Program; Ann Dublirer
This course prepares students to teach young children (birth to five) with and without disabilities. Students learn about recommended early childhood and early childhood special education practices (e.g. supportive learning environments, curriculum development and implementation, instructional strategies and family-centered practices.)
- Faculty Name: Benjamin Cohen
College of Arts and Sciences
Interdisciplinary Food Studies: History, Politics and Technology
Course Number: STS 2500
Local Food Hub; Emily Manley, Manager of Outreach and Communications
This course examines sustainable agriculture from historical, political and technological perspectives and as a topic of community infrastructure. It moves from general studies of technology and nature to specific cases of foodshed design in the Charlottesville area. Students work at Morven and with the Local Food Hub in Scottsville, VA, to produce a final group project placing current LFH sustainability projetcs into historical, cultural and techonological contexts.
- Faculty Name: Tanya Denckla Cobb
School of Architecture Applied
Community Based Food Systems Research
Course Number: PLAC 5500
Fluvanna County Historical Society (Judy Mickelson, Director); Jefferson Area
Board for Aging (Judy Berger and Gordon Walker, Director)
This course will train students in methods of community-based research through the lens of food heritage. Students will learn appropriate behaviors and protocols for oral histories, as well as specific considerations and approaches for working with immigrant, African-American, Native American, urban and rural people. Students will conduct basic research (archives, county fair records, etc.), conduct individual interviews for a "Food Heritage StoryCorps" and write profiles of local food heritage for eventual publication.
- Faculty Name: Peter Ochs
College of Arts and Sciences
Faith and Service: Study and Local Service in the Abrahamic Traditions
Course Number: RELG 3559
Habitat for Humanity of Greater Charlottesville, Katie Giesshuesler, Volunteer Manager
In a time of violence among the three Abrahamic communities, this course examines two potential practices of peace: shared study across religious borders and shared efforts to repair society. Students will study Abrahamic traditions about shelter. And they will join Habitat for Humanity's effort to help families in need build their own homes.
- Faculty Name: Phyliis Leffler and E. Franklin Dukes
College of Arts and Sciences and School of Architecture
UVA History: Race and Repair
Course Number: HIUS 4591; ARCH 4500; PLAN
Quality Community Council, Karen Waters
This course addresses the history of race at The University of Virginia. It begins with the role of slaves in building and sustaining the university and progresses topically to the present. The course is open to community members who have been impaced by this history, who engage fully with students in discussion of materials and group research projects.
- Faculty Name: Kendra Y. Hamilton
School: College of Arts and Sciences
Title: MotherLands: Agrarian Utopias/Dystopias of the Global South
Course Number: SWAG 3559
Community Partner: The 10 1/2 Street Community Garden, co-sponsored by St. Paul's Memorial Church (Rev. Jim Richardson), Trinity Episcopal Church (Rec. Cass Bailey), and the Diocese of Virginia
Contrasting the "founding farmers" agrarian utopianism with agricultural dystopias created by plantation slavery and its heirs, readings will map geographic landscapes and historical periods onto artistic and activist movements, considering issues of gender, race and class in literature and visionary movements from "Slow Food" to Kenya's "Green Belt" and beyond.
View past ACE recipients: 2007 | 2008 | 2009 | 2010
2009-10 Committee Members
have volunteered to serve as technical advisors to faculty
members applying for grants.
Are there other lessons or experiences you would like to share with UVa’s Office of University Community Partnerships or with your peers in SEAS or the College?
"Yes it did because I have learned that working with the community is extremely important in fully understanding the issue beyond the scope of the classroom. By working with the community, I can begin to understand the limitations of realities on the issue of agriculture rather than making solutions based off of ideal or theoretical situations."
"Communication and respect are key to working with members of the community. It is important to get a clear understanding of the wants and needs of the community member and their ideas for possible solutions. It is also important, however, to keep an open mind for other changes they could enact."
"My desire to work within my community definitely increased. The class made me feel more empowered to make positive change in Charlottesville and my home town. I have completed similar course projects in the community before. But this class gave me a new avenue to work with the community and a new set of knowledge to employ."
"I would like to reiterate that the community experience was a much better approximation of real world work than anything a student gets in a regular classroom setting. Truly, working with the LFH was a great experience."
"I cannot stress enough how effective it is to have students work with their local communities. It is very easy to confine ones’ self to the community within the University. This segregation of students and community members does not benefit either party. Courses like this are critical to promoting community engagement amongst students. I think the curriculum is perfectly set up to promote this relationship, the best way to propagate it is to just have more classes like this available to students. In fact, I think a community engagement class such as this should be a mandatory requirement for all schools within the university. Thank you for this awesome opportunity!"
Advice from ACE Faculty
"Plan, plan, plan. Working with partners in the community can be incredibly rewarding, but what you get on the output side of a project depends very strongly on building relationships, understanding, and expectations on the input side. It's hard work, so don't enter into it lightly. And always respect and honor the needs of the partner--after all, it's their project and their need."
"Take seriously the commitment to teach the course three times in five years, and make sure to have a commitment from Dept. chair to count the course as part of your teaching load."
"Focus on team work and included others (students/graduates students) in the planning process."
"It is vital to meet with community organizations first, before sending students out to meet with 'the community.' This should be built into your methodology. Our students also found it very helpful to develop their set of 'best practices' for working with the community, so that they were intentional and deliberative about their interactions."
"Use some form of journal or blog so you can assess how the UVa students are responding, and their growing and changing sense of the experience. This not only helps you guide them, and keep your finger on their pulse and the pulse of the class, but articulating their growth is rewarding for them. The challenges of these engagement experiences can be stunning, overwhelming, and working through them is really helpful."
"Be clear about your goals for involving the community and take time to adequately prepare community representatives for what they might expect from the students. Often, the community is not familiar with the academic context and sometimes even a bit intimidated by it."