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What does a student need to do if service-learning is included with a University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire course?

This is considered the credit-option for completing service-learning and the student does not need to complete any online forms.  If a class fulfills only 15 hours, the student will likely need to find another project (and use the Center for Service-Learning's online process) to complete the 30-hour degree requirement.

Does service have to be related to the student’s major?

No. Students can pursue projects that pertain to their academic or general interests. Service activities could be part of the curriculum (i.e., completed for academic credit) or co- or extra-curricular. In all cases they must be integrated into and enhance the student’s academic major/minor or one or more of the areas of knowledge and skill included among the UW Eau Claire Liberal Education Learning Goals & Outcomes

Must a student’s faculty/academic staff mentor be the student’s academic adviser?

No. The mentor—selected by the student—can be any faculty or academic staff member.

Can another student act as a project supervisor?

No.  The project supervisor is meant to be someone who works for or works directly with the organization for which the student is doing a service-learning project.  Students who organize projects for non-profit organizations are not considered project supervisors within the Center for Service-Learning's context.

Can a student be paid and still fulfill the service-learning requirement?

Yes. The student may conduct the service-learning activity on a volunteer basis or as a paid employee.  Additionally, the Center for Service-Learning requests that students attempt to spend at least 30% of unpaid time while selecting this option. (i.e. 10 hours of unpaid work for 30-hour service-learning projects) 

Can service be performed at a for-profit organization or company?

Yes, but within not-for-profit parameters. If the service-learning activity is performed with a for-profit organization, it must meet an identified community need and must not involve the organization’s profit-making activities. For example, a paid accounting internship at an accounting firm in which the student participated in pro bono audits for nonprofit agencies may qualify, whereas, an internship at a for-profit firm in which the student’s work is only in the service of the company’s profit-making activities would not qualify.

Can service activities completed in high school, last semester, or last year fulfill the service-learning requirement?

Projects completed during high school cannot apply toward the requirement. Service-learning activities may be completed at any time between admission and graduation from UW-Eau Claire, although students with the support of the academic adviser may petition the Dean’s Office of the School/College in which they are enrolled to use pre-enrollment experiences in partial fulfillment of the requirement. A project conducted under the “non-credit option” must be purposeful and planned cooperatively among the student, the faculty/academic staff mentor, and project supervisor within the context of service-learning before the student begins the project. Likewise, the student’s Service-Learning Agreement must be approved by the faculty/academic staff mentor and project supervisor, and submitted to the Center for Service-Learning before the project begins.

When and where can service-learning activities be conducted?

Activities can be conducted virtually anywhere and at any time. Although many students choose to fulfill their requirement during the academic year in the Eau Claire area, others work on projects during the summer and in their hometowns or elsewhere. Some students have completed successful projects in other countries; some study abroad programs offer optional or required community service-learning opportunities.

If the student has already started a service-learning project, is it too late to fill out the agreement form?

No.  It is not too late.  Please contact our office to discuss retroactive projects.

What should a student do if they can't find their community organization/supervisor in the online system?

Students should contact or visit the Center for Service-Learning and provide a brief description of the project along with the full name and contact information (email, phone, etc.) of their selected community supervisor.  An online account will need to be created for them once they are verified through our office.