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Scholars applications are accepted during Fall Semester, and must be submitted prior to Oct. 15th. 

Program Overview

Community-Engaged Scholars are dedicated to applying their education to make a meaningful difference in their community and the world. Students accepted into this program will have the opportunity to engage in service related to their field of study and personal interests in addition to completing Community-Engaged Learning (CEL) courses.  Upon graduation, scholars attend a Community Engagement Celebration & Awards banquet where they share their capstone and receive a graduation stole. Scholars are acknowledged in the commencement program, and the distinction is recorded on their official transcript so employers and graduate programs can see evidence of a student’s determination to go the extra mile.

Between 2011 – 2017, 79 students graduated with the Service-Learning Scholars distinction. In 2017, the program changed its name to Community-Engaged Scholars and put greater emphasis on civic engagement and USU’s dedication to graduating students as Citizen Scholars.  At this time, a Civic Foundations and Community Engagement course was added to program requirements to better prepare all Scholars for a lifetime of engagement in their communities. 

Requirements 

Students interested in graduating as a Community-Engaged Scholar must complete the following requirements. We recommend students apply for the program no later thanthe first semester of their junior year to ensure they have time to meet all requirements. In addition to the requirements below, scholars must meet with advisors each semester, and attend a program introduction and overview their first semester (as scholars).

Academic: Complete three 'CEL' designated Community-Engaged Learning courses. These courses work with CBI community partners to give students hands-on application of course concepts. All Scholars accepted into the program starting Fall 17 will be required to take a USU 2160: Community Voices & Engagement course during their time at USU.  Scholars can also create 'CEL' designation by adding a service and reflection component to an undesignated class. Community-Engaged Learning courses can be searched for in Banner by looking for the 'CEL' attibute.

Co-Curricular: Scholars will complete a minimum of 300 service hours. Hours spent on capstone projects can be counted towards this 300 hour total. Scholars will record all service hours through the AggieSync database.

Capstone: A Community Action Project is due the final semester before a scholar graduates. The community action project is the culminating activity of the Community-Engaged Scholars program. It is recommended that the community action project require between 50 – 100 hours of service. The project should be self-sustaining and leave a lasting impact. For example, students might create a new service center program, a new annual event, a piece of artwork to be displayed in the community, a new hiking trail…the possibilities are endless.

Recognition 

Students completing all the requirements of the program are recognized by:
        ~ Graduation Awards Banquet
        ~ Community-Engaged Scholar Graduation Stole 
        ~ Acknowledgement in the University Commencement Program
        ~ Community-Engaged Scholar printed on Transcript 


Community Engaged Scholar FAQ's

FAQ's About Service Hours

You may count any properly recorded hours in the AggieSync database during your time at USU. Hours completed prior to your acceptance into the CE Scholars program should have a supervisor's contact information.
Yes. It is suggested that you spend between 50 to 100 hours on your community action project.
Yes. For example, if you are coordinating an environmental clean-up project, the time spent calling and organizing volunteers for the project can be counted, as well as the time actually spent on the clean-up project.
Yes and No. Typically, travel time to and from service projects in Logan does not count toward the 300 hour requirement. However if travel is a significant part of your service in Logan you may contact the CSD to have travel time approved. However, travel time to service locations outside of Logan does count.
No. Service can be done over the semester or summer while you are not registered for classes.
You should complete your reports each month through  AggieSync - which can be accessed throuh Quicklinks on My.USU.edu. You are required to have them completed prior to your semester meeting with a program advisor. Do not wait until the end of the semester to record your hours, your memory might not be as good as you think.
There are a number of ways to find out about service opportunities:
  • Visit the Val R. Christensen Service Center, TSC room 332, or on the web at http://www.usu.edu/asusu/servicecenter/. Sign up for specific programs or contact the program directors to serve on a committee.
  • Watch for emails from the Community Engaged Learning Program with information about upcoming service events.
  • Visit the Cache Valley Volunteer Center located in Smith’s Food and Drug, 442 North 175 East, Logan, UT 84321.
  • Choose a non-profit of interest and let them know of your commitment to serve.
  • Come talk to the Center for Community Engagement staff - they will be involved in all these programs and will be able to direct you to an opportunity that is right for you. They might also be able to point you towards  opportunities specific to a particular course or major.
Our record holder completed 1000 hours of service in one year! This was an extraordinary effort and is not recommended for most students.

Here are some guidelines:

  • Hours add up over time. The earlier you begin the easier it will be. If you begin the program two years before your graduate you could finish the 300 hour requirement volunteering 3 hours a week.
  • Record your hours regularly. You will be surprised how much time you are actually volunteering if you record it regularly. Many student forget hours and projects if they do not record them as they occur.
  • Start your community action project early. The hours you spend on your project count toward your 300 hours. Start early so that you can include them.

FAQ's About Community Action Project

One way to start is to volunteer at different agencies while working toward your 300 hours. When you have decided what type of volunteer work you enjoy most, what issues concern you, and what the community needs are that interest you, you can decide how to combine that type of community service with your major course of study.
It is recommended that you spend between 50 and 100 hours.
Yes! Though only your hours count toward the 300 hour requirement. Involvement of others in the project can provide you with experience in organizing the work of others and help your project to be sustainable once you have graduated

FAQ's About CEL Courses

Yes, designated 'CEL' courses taken before the student officially enrolls as a scholar may be used.
Yes, you must have a 3.0 GPA prior to admission into the program, and you will need at least a 3.0 GPA at graduation.
Yes. We’ve coordinated this with the Honors program staff. Make sure you point out the overlap on both contracts.
The Community Voices & Engagement Course is a new requirement for all Scholars accepted Fall 2017 going forward. The course will be offered spring semesters. The course will cover concepts such as asset-based engagement, social justice, communication, effective volunteering, and making the most out of your capstone experience. The course should be taken prior to your Senior year at USU for 1 credits.