At Marquette, Service Learners are involved with the community in several different ways. They may work alone, in pairs, in small groups, or with their entire class. We have identified five models of service learning to summarize the variety of ways students participate in the Service Learning Program.
Students choose from among several placements that have been chosen from their courses. They usually work at these sites 2-3 hours per week throughout the semester. The service students provide is the conduit to their learning; they gain access to the populations or issues related to their courses and, in return, provide needed assistance to the organizations and/or their clientele.
- Students in Marquette's Culture and Health class, a requirement of the College of Nursing, may work with Project Q, a program at the LGBT Community Center, as educators and mentors for LGBTQ youth. Marquette students are able to see disparities in the health care system firsthand in the Milwaukee community amongst a diverse clientele and talk about issues that affect young women, young men, people of color, and transgender/gender Non-conforming people. LGBTQ youth are able to discuss these issues openly with Marquette students and feel more accepted and comfortable, both inside and outside Project Q's "safe space."
Students in certain courses (e.g. Physics 1), take material that they are learning in class and create presentations for audiences in the community. The Service Learners work in small groups and choose from among several sites, which have been set up by the Service Learning office. Sometimes professors require students to do their presentations more than once; others have them present in class before going to the community.
- Dr. Joe Collins's Physics 2 students work with Windlake Elementary giving presentations geared toward elementary students during their science classes. The Marquette students prepare interactive presentations about Newton's Laws, electricity and magnetism, forces and motion, energy, and space. The Windlake Elementary students are able to learn about these concepts in a fun and interesting way. Marquette students are able to reinforce their own understanding of important physics concepts by teaching these concepts to others.
This model is similar to the Presentation Model, except the students all work with the same organization and put on a fair, or a mini-conference, that includes several learning stations or short workshops. Service Learners work in groups to coordinate all aspects of the event; they gain leadership skills as well as a greater knowledge of course content working with the Presentation-Plus Model.
- Astrida Kaugars’ Health Psychology class plans and leads a half-day program for third to eighth-grade students at Our Next Generation. Topics include nutrition, exercise, smoking, body image, etc.
In some courses, Service Learners - working alone or in groups - produce a tangible product for their agencies.
- Professor Maya Held's Advanced Television Productions class makes short, informational videos for Community Partners. The Community Partners obtain a well-produced video at little to no cost, and Marquette students are able to apply video filming and editing techniques learned in the classroom to real life.
Working in groups, Service Learners collaborate with community members to devise and implement a project.
- Students from Sarah Feldner’s Organizational Communication class conducted a communication audit for a non-profit organization in Milwaukee. The organization was new to the community and sought to determine the community's perception of the agency. They also sought to determine if the communication styles of employees was effectively marketing the agency. The Marquette students we able to apply skills learned in the Organizational Communication course and produce a tangible result for the agency.