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Potential benefits for Students
- Takes students out of the classroom and into the community to provide students with “real-life” experiences that in turn supports and contributes to academic learning
- Gives students an opportunity to become active citizens, to be part of the political process and part of the problem solving solutions that impact the community
- Provides students with political, social and professional resources
- Broadens perspectives and enhancing critical thinking skills
- Improves interpersonal and human relations skills
- Allows you to forge professional networks
Community Engagement Award
Community-Based Learning Scholarships
The PCC Foundation offers Service-to-Community Scholarships to students who commit to volunteering in their communities. This program allows students who often have to work to put themselves through school the opportunity to volunteer approximately 35 hours per term in exchange for a $2400 scholarship ($800 per term).
Carmen Martinez Memorial Science/Service-Learning Scholarship
The PCC Foundation offers this scholarship as money becomes available. See their web site for scholarship amount and award criteria.
The PCC Foundation awards many other scholarships that recognize the service work of students. Visit PCC Scholarships for more information.
Volunteer Resources for Students
- Guide to Finding a Volunteer Site
- Tips for Communicating with a Community Partner
- Tips for Coordinating a Group Volunteer Project
- Student Group Guide for Reflection
Additional Volunteer Information
In addition to the partnerships PCC has developed, there are other sites in the community looking for volunteers. Here are some web sites that list additional volunteer opportunities in the Portland Community.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Community-Based Learning?
Community-Based Learning is a teaching method that combines course learning objectives, participation in community affairs, and reflection. Faculty members choose to teach with community-based learning assignments that meet the learning objectives of the course through active participation in the community.
What will I be doing in a Community-Based Learning Course?
Community-Based Learning looks different depending on what course you are in. Generally, faculty have community-based learning as an option to a more traditional assignment like a term paper. Your faculty member will tell you the number of hours you need to fulfill as well as what sort of reflection (journal, short papers, a presentation) you will do to connect your community participation to the course learning objectives.
How do I know which courses are Community-Based Learning courses?
Most faculty members who have Community-Based Learning in their courses will have a notation in the course schedule. We also have a special section in the current course schedule that lists the Community-Based Learning courses at PCC. Some courses have Community-Based Learning integrated into the curriculum, others include it as an option.
Where can I do my community-based assignment?
There are many opportunities to become involved in the community in Portland. The kind of assignment you do will depend on the course, your professor's preferences, your own interest, and the availability of a particular placement. Check out the lists of Community-Based Learning Opportunities for our current community partners. If you wish to find an alternative site, please check with your instructor.
My instructor says I need to turn in the Community-Based Learning Agreement, where can I find the forms?
All of our forms can be found online on the Forms page. Be sure to check with your instructor for deadlines and any additional forms you may need for class.
Can I continue my community involvement after the term is over?
Most of our community partners would love to have you continue your participation after the term is over. Check with your site supervisor to find out how. You may also be able to earn Cooperative Education Credit for your community hours. To learn more about that, contact the Cooperative Education Office.