GSL6: Request for Proposals

Request for Proposals:  

One World: Inclusion and Transformation in Global Service Learning

The 6th Global Service-Learning Summit

Clemson University, Clemson, SC

Madren Conference Center and James F. Martin Inn

Nov 3 – 5, 2019

Registration: $350 by July 15, 2019. $425 after July 15, 2019. Scholarships available.

The proposal deadline is midnight EDT on Sunday, February 17, 2019.

Online proposal submission

Since 2011, the Global Service-Learning (GSL) Summit Series has developed an inclusive community of practice advancing best practices and aspiring to the highest standards of community-campus partnerships for global learning. Members of this community include diverse stakeholders: students, educators across disciplines, practitioners, community organization representatives, and community members.  

Each GSL Summit has stimulated conversations around critical issues facing the field. Through an applied conference framework, participants build community and determine action steps. The 6th Global Service-Learning Summit theme is: One World: Inclusion and Transformation in Global Service Learning.

Consistent with GSL Summit precedents, the upcoming Summit at Clemson University seeks proposals that prioritize community partner perspectives, community partnership/impact research,  and case studies that involve community voice in the writing process (both co-written or co-edited by community partners) related to effective, inclusive partnerships that advance shared approaches to global learning, inclusion, and transformation.

In efforts to ensure that multiple voices and perspectives are represented, please limit the number of sessions that each facilitator is involved in to two sessions.

SUB-THEME ONE:  The work and challenge of supporting global learning at home and abroad and the connections that apply in both settings.  Presentations under this theme might address:  

  • Local community-campus partnerships
  • Deliberate, interdisciplinary collaboration in GSL programming
  • Intentional inclusion of STEM disciplines and traditionally under-represented groups in global service learning

Example critical questions:

  • What program factors ensure intended global learning – or even transformation – in local and international partnerships? How do we know? How do these factors vary, if at all, in relation to distance from campus?
  • What strategies ensure successful interdisciplinary collaboration, inclusion of STEM fields, and inclusion of underrepresented populations? How do we measure success in these efforts?
  • Does the location of global learning – on-campus, near campus, or abroad – influence how we theorize or measure intended global learning and transformational learning outcomes?
  • These questions are intended to stimulate thinking, and are not intended to limit the scope of possible proposals in this category.

SUB-THEME TWO: Best practices, program models, and ethical approaches for global service-learning and community-campus partnerships.   We encourage proposals that address the following topics:

  • The co-construction of programs with full participation and inclusion of diverse and diffuse stakeholders,
  • The complexity of community-based global learning and important critiques developed through decades of research.

Example critical questions:

  • How has stakeholder inclusion and diversity been theorized, advanced, and measured? What next steps must be taken?
  • What does conceptual vacillation between global service-learning, volunteering, internships, experiential learning, and community-based global learning signify for our field? How do we step forward in practicing, theorizing, and measuring increasingly ethical approaches?
  • Considering contemporary and historic critiques of global service-learning and volunteerism, is it evident – theoretically and empirically – that researchers and practitioners have identified program models that avoid or ameliorate the most trenchant critiques? How do we discern quality – and what is its minimum level?
  • These questions are intended to stimulate thinking, and are not intended to limit the scope of possible proposals in this category.

SPECIALIZED TRACKS:  Based on previous Summits and ongoing conversations in the field, we anticipate enough interest to provide specific tracks that address:

  • Educating in pre-health, health, and allied health fields with full awareness of the significant challenges in off-campus undergraduate and graduate health professions education.
  • Advancing best practices for reciprocal relationships in global service learning and education amidst diverse/differing cultural assumptions, as is the case in many contexts around the world, including collaboration with indigenous communities.

Example critical questions:

  • How do campuses ethically respond to the extraordinary demand for experiential pre-health education programs?
  • How do campuses support students physical and emotional safety in contexts with extraordinarily varied conceptions of human rights, women’s rights, gender inclusivity, and sexual propriety?
  • How might conceptions of partnership and exchange necessarily vary according to community and cultural context?
  • These questions are intended to stimulate thinking, and are not intended to limit the scope of possible proposals in this category.

This year’s Summit seeks proposals for Conference Sessions, Case Study Sessions, and Posters, each of which are described in greater detail below. Proposals are encouraged from practitioners, community partners, faculty/educators, researchers, graduate and undergraduate students.  Undergraduate students are particularly encouraged to submit posters. If proposing a discursive session or case study, undergraduates should be sponsored by a faculty/staff member.

The proposal deadline is midnight EDT on Sunday, February 17, 2019.

Session Formats

Discursive Sessions
The 6th GSL Summit seeks proposals for individual conference sessions and team panel presentations involving various stakeholders. Panel presentations will be 90 minutes long and should be organized around research topics, themes, sharing of papers, practice or theory. These sessions should include strategies for opening discussion, in addition to sharing presentation content.  No less than 45 minutes should be devoted to intentional discussion. Individuals who propose topics alone may be matched with others to form a themed panel. These sessions may proceed through presentation, through storytelling, through creative expression, and through workshopping and/or skillbuilding. Preference will be given to sessions that address critical questions surrounding the subthemes.

Proposals in this category are encouraged in the above areas, but are not limited to these topics.

Case study sessions should provide an applied setting for attendees to share  knowledge, experience, and perspective as they engage in critical conversations about the themes articulated above.These case study sessions will have a dual purpose:

  1. to help build a community of practice among summit participants and,
  2. to introduce participants to practical examples of effective practice in reciprocal engagement/community partnerships in GSL.

A preference will be given to cases primarily or jointly authored by community organizations/community partners. Case studies should

  1. describe action and efforts across various stakeholders,
  2. outline effective practice along with ongoing dilemmas, issues, and struggles,
  3. include 3 to 4 open-ended questions facing the future of the partnership,
  4. include a strategy for facilitating a session that is engaged and participatory for all attendees, and
  5. be fewer than 6 pages.

Case study examples from the 3rd Summit are available here.

Posters describe single programmatic approaches or research endeavors related to the themes articulated above. The poster session will take place in a way that encourages the whole Summit community to gather and interact with presenters. Please think about your poster as a conversation starter, connecting your research or best practice model with the Summit’s themes and other attendees. Please find additional poster information here.

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES: Previous Summit attendees have found guidance and insight represented at the following links:

  1. Program links and resources for Summits 1 through 5.
  2. Decades of research on community-campus partnerships for ethical global service-learning.
  3. In respect to health and allied fields, please see the University of Minnesota’s Ethics of Help Symposium and the keynote presentation at the October 2018 AAC&U Global Learning Conference.  
  4. In respect to vulnerable children and orphan volunteering, please view a report from a breadth of international development organizations here, a 3-minute summary video here, or a faith-based effort to stop orphanage volunteering while encouraging healthy and holistic approaches to supporting family and child development – Faith to Action – here.
  5. In relation to ethical community-campus partnerships, attendees are encouraged to consider, critique, and further advance frames of reference for best practice such as the Fair Trade Learning guidelines and other approaches at the intersection of community-campus partnership, learning, and development.

Information to Include in Proposal

Primary Contact Person’s Name, Title, Institution/Organization, Contact Information

Additional Facilitators or Presenters Information

**Please limit the number of sessions that each facilitator is involved in to two sessions

Summit Theme

Session Format

Session Title

Brief Description (150 words): This is a shorter version of the proposal abstract. It should describe your session and will be used for the Final Program.

Intended Audience (25 words): Please indicate who would best benefit from attending this session.

Anticipated Participant Learning Outcomes (50-75 words): Please describe or list the outcomes for your audience (The participant will be able to…. What are the “takeaways” from your session?)

Introductory, Advanced, or Accessible for Introductory and Advanced Participants?

Please help us communicate with conference attendees by indicating if this is an introductory session, an advanced discussion, or a session suitable for introductory and advanced participants. If you indicate the session is advanced, we will prompt you to indicate accessible online information that has informed your work. This could be an organization’s website and explanation, a video, a podcast, a blog, or an academic text.

Clarifying Questions

Plan for Facilitating Discussion (100-200 words): How will your session ensure full participation for all attendees? How will the format support full participation of communication styles and ways of knowing, being, and experiencing?

Explanation of Community Partner (100-200 words): In global engagement partnerships, the term “community partner” is used in numerous ways. Please indicate how you conceptualize “community partner” in terms of this partnership or these partnerships specifically, and how you ensure community voice and feedback throughout your programming.

Vulnerable populations (100-200): Considerable research has demonstrated the clear harms that may come to vulnerable children and medical patients through global engagement partnerships. Please indicate whether vulnerable populations are involved in the partnership(s) discussed here and, if so, what clear steps are taken to protect and empower those populations.

Financial transparency (no more than 200 words): Is the partnership profiled here attentive to and/or transparent about addressing the power and privilege issues at play in respect to financial flows in this work? If so, how?

(For Discursive sessions and Posters) Proposal Abstract (400 words): The abstract should describe the content and the significance or effectiveness of the session as well as how it relates to the theme of the Summit theme and subthemes.

(For Case Studies) Case studies should follow the format below. Sections 1-3 below should be highly factual. Writers should avoid reflection until sections 4-5.

Section 1: Context — 2 paragraphs: Description of partnership and primarily stakeholders (e.g. community organizations, educational institutions, community members, etc.) – Where, Why, Size of program/Number of years in operation, Financial Information

Section 2: Program/Partnership Description — 4-5 paragraphs – Credit/non-credit, Scope/Length, Type of service, Pre-departure training, on-site support, student-community work-plans, re-entry

Section 3: Impact — 2 paragraphs and/or a graphic – Evaluation model, Impact for organizational/community partners, Impact for host families/communities

Section 4: Challenges with effective practice/partnership — 2 paragraphs – Include 2-3 questions for group consideration

Section 5: Goals (Ideal Scenario) and Next Steps for the Program — 2 paragraphs

Key dates

  • Saturday, December 15, 2018 : RFP opens
  • Sunday, February 17, 2019: Proposals due
  • Friday, March 29, 2019: Decisions and feedback sent to primary contact person
  • Saturday, March 30, 2019: Summit registration opens
  • Monday, July 15, 2019: Primary contact persons and session presenters to confirm or decline
  • Monday, July 15, 2019: Early bird registration ends; All presenters must be registered
  • Tuesday, October 15, 2019: Summit registration closes (350 max participants)
  • Friday, October 25, 2019: Presenters submit presentation materials to be posted on Globalsl Summit website

Contact information