Content with Institutions : Miami-Date Community College

A president initiates a book fair and a volunteer fair

Before Eduardo Padron was appointed president of Miami-Dade Community College in 1996, service-learning was already a growing practice on many of the college s campuses. Under President Padron s leadership, it has become one of the best-known practices on all of the college s campuses. President Padron put in place a month-long book fair to highlight literacy issues in Miami, opening up three blocks of downtown Miami to one thousand vendors and more than 10,000 visitors. More recently, he brought together hundreds of community organizations for Volunteer 98, a fair that drew 20,000 Miami residents downtown to learn about community…

College-wide Infrastructure with Professional Staff to Promote Service and Community Involvement

Realizing that promoting civic responsibility and fulfilling our civic mission requires time, resources, and the commitment of dedicated professionals, Miami-Dade Community College (M-DCC) established a Center for Community Involvement that has a full-time college-wide Director and three full-time campus directors. The role of the Center is to promote and administer service-learning, America Reads, and community involvement activities at our six campuses. In addition to the full time directors, each Center is staffed by part-time coordinators, a “”Service-Learning Faculty Coordinator,”” student ambassadors, and a number of student assistants. Creating this infrastructure is the most critical element in systematically responding to higher…

Forums on Civic Responsibility

We hold “”Forums on Civic Responsibility”” on our campuses that allow students, faculty, and administrators to reflect on the meaning of civic responsibility, the skills we need to be better citizens, and what each of us can do individually to fulfill our civic obligations. We have held 12 Forums in the last six months and more than 150 people have attended. Website

Interdisciplinary reflection sessions: small groups of students and faculty talk to and learn from each other

Interdisciplinary reflection sessions offered at Miami-Dade Community College allow faculty and students to talk to and learn from others engaged in a broad variety of service efforts. During one week of the semester, five one-hour campus-wide reflection sessions are offered in which small groups of students from a variety of courses and service sites share what they ve accomplished and what they ve learned in service-learning classes. Faculty often attend these sessions for the exposure to different methods of reflection and lessons from students.   From Service Matters 1998: Engaging Higher Education In the Renewal of America s Communities and…

Assessing impact on students, faculty, the institution, and the community

It has been said that good community service programs keep track of everything they re doing, but great community service efforts are too busy doing things to waste time keeping track. Miami-Dade Community College might beg to differ. Miami-Dade boasts of a host of leading and innovative efforts in community service. At the same time, Bob Exley, the assistant to the president and director of the community service program, has been able to compile a vast amount of data assessing the impact that the program has had on students, faculty, the institution, and the community. For Dr. Exley, high-quality assessment…