David Cooper, Ph.D.
Professor of American Thought and Language
Michigan State University, MI
Dr. David Cooper is an ardent believer in the power of service-learning to instill in his students the values of engaged citizenship. According to Dr. Cooper, service-learning gives students the opportunity to participate in constructive conversations, actively learn about democratic values, and understand their civic responsibilities. All of these help students address “disconnectedness, isolation and lack of authenticity,” concerns that Cooper has addressed in numerous writings such as Couch to Commons and The Paths Mistaken. In his teaching, Dr. Cooper strives to uncover meanings of community, citizenry, and civic responsibility in our democracy.
In 1992, Dr. Cooper founded the Service-Learning Writing Program at Michigan State University, which oversees the writing instruction for first-year students. This successful program links writing and service, matching 300 writing students each year with more than 70 local nonprofit agencies to write grant proposals, newsletters, and “op-ed” advocacy pieces. His courses in American Literature from the civic and philanthropic traditions combine inspiring service-learning assignments with civic literacy. As a result of Dr. Cooper’s teaching, research, and action, departments at Michigan State from agriculture to philosophy have made service-learning a part of their curriculum. A nationally sought-after speaker and consultant on service-learning related topics, Dr. Cooper has also published widely in the areas of civic and moral literacy, democracy and rhetoric, critical thinking, and methods of applying active learning.
“The struggle against intolerance, oppression, inequality, injustice, and exploitation will not be won at conference podiums, in academic journals, on web sites, or, indeed, through the spiritually empty traces of theory. Instead, democratic reform, economic and social justice, and civic engagement have to do with moral renewal and ethical commitment. ’¦ If my experience amounts to anything, it reveals that service-learning’¦ invites us to redirect our scholarship into lives of meaningful service.”
— Dr. David Cooper
Donna Duffy, Ph.D.
Professor of Psychology
Middlesex Community College, MA
Dr. Donna Duffy’s dedication to student learning stems from her fundamental commitment to the formation of caring and informed citizens for a democratic society; service-learning is a critical element in this process. On her own campus and across the nation, Dr. Duffy has been a key force behind the widespread adoption of service-learning as an integral part of higher education. Her focus on student learning as a primary outcome of service-learning has inspired many faculty to adopt this pedagogy.
As the designer and coordinator of an instructional development program for faculty, Dr. Duffy explores cutting-edge research and new pedagogical approaches to service-learning and integrates them into curriculum development programs for fellow faculty members. Thanks to Dr. Duffy’s efforts, service-learning has become a central part of student learning at Middlesex Community College and the college mission now includes service-learning as a main priority of student achievement.
Dr. Duffy has published extensively on the advancement of service in child and developmental psychology, and she is recognized both nationally and internationally for her workshops, seminars, and presentations on the subject. As a result of her work, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching selected Dr. Duffy as one of fifteen faculty nationwide to participate in an initiative to develop the scholarship of teaching. She is co-editor of the American Association for Higher Education (AAHE) monograph in psychology, With Service in Mind.
As a professor at a community college, I often see students whose individual learning styles do not fit traditional educational practices. Service-learning encourages different ways of knowing and enables more students to be successful in our classrooms. It provides opportunities to increase retention and document accountability to the larger community while students gain more confidence in their capabilities.”
— Dr. Donna Duffy
Albert Camarillo, Ph.D.
Professor of History
Stanford University, CA
Dr. Albert Camarillo’s long-time commitment to the Chicano community is borne out in both his action and his teaching. His passion for linking higher education with public service is reflected in his numerous writings on Mexican-American social and political history and through his course, “Poverty and Homelessness.” Each year, the course gives students the opportunity to tutor children after school at a dozen homeless shelters in the Menlo Park area. Currently, Dr. Camarillo is serving as Director of the Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity Department.
James Farr, Ph.D.
Professor, Political Science
University of Minnesota, MN
Dr. James Farr’s excitement about combining political thought with civic engagement culminated in helping to create Public Achievement. Through this collaborative initiative with an urban elementary school, his political science students act as coaches to younger students, helping them learn about problem-solving, community, and citizenship. Due to its notable success, Public Achievement is now a nationwide project. Dr. Farr was also instrumental in revamping the undergraduate curriculum and creating a Citizenship and Public Ethics theme that cuts across courses
Kalin Grigg, M.A.
Assistant Professor of Sociology and Human Services;
Director, Center for Service-Learning
Fort Lewis College, CO
Kalin Grigg’s fundamental commitment to community and social change embodies that of an engaged faculty member. He was instrumental in the development of the Community and College Institutes for Change project. Thanks to this initiative, 15 faculty from five departments engage 250’“500 students each semester in service-learning projects. Grigg has been a leader on his campus, in his state, and nationally promoting quality service-learning. He serves on the Colorado Governor’s Commission on National and Community Service.
Barbara Israel, Ph.D.
Chair, Health Behavior and
University of Michigan, MI
Dr. Israel involves both students and community members in her participatory action research projects, which have included research on occupational stress and health in the Detroit auto industry. In her courses students have established neighborhood organizations, developed citizen advisory boards for local health centers, and created channels for community members to advocate policy change.
Dr. Israel was part of a team to develop a nationwide initiative to increase interaction among those in the public health field. This initiative resulted in seven national partnerships between schools of public health, health departments, and community organizations.
Francis Johnston, Ph.D.
Professor of Anthropology
University of Pennsylvania, PA
Praised by the U.S. Department of Education, Dr. Francis Johnston’s Nutrition Project at the Turner Middle School is used as a model for community schools internationally. The project gives his Anthropology students the opportunity to contribute to textbooks and to participate in community health and nutrition initiatives.
Dr. Johnston has authored more than 162 publications and has inspired Penn faculty to develop more than 70 academically based service courses. Additionally, Dr. Johnston is the Director of the Nutrition and Health area of the Kellogg Foundation’s Program to Link Intellectual Resources and Community Needs.
C. David Lisman, Ph.D.
Professor of Philosophy
Community College of Aurora, CO
As a leader in the movement to integrate service-learning into the curriculum, Dr. David Lisman founded the Community College of Aurora’s Service-Learning Program. Dr. Lisman frequently conducts faculty workshops and presents at conferences nationwide to promote integrating ethical reflection in service-learning and to promote the kind of civic competency necessary to sustain participatory democracy. A prolific writer, he has recently published a book on service-learning, Toward A Civil Society: Civic Literacy and Service-Learning and is co-editor of the AAHE monograph in philosophy.
Kathleen Maas Weigert, Ph.D.
Center for Social Concerns;
Associate Professor of American Studies
University of Notre Dame, IN
Dr. Kathleen Maas Weigert’s contribution to service-learning on the Notre Dame campus is reflected in the “Faculty Social Concerns Fellow” position she created with external funding. She co-teaches a cross-disciplinary, homelessness prevention course with the current Fellow through Purdue University’s Engineering Projects in Community Service. Dr. Weigert’s work encompasses conducting faculty workshops, evaluating service-learning and creating action research opportunities. She is co-editor of the AAHE monograph, Teaching for Justice: Concepts and Models for Service-Learning in Peace Studies.
Meta Mendel-Reyes, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Political Science
Swarthmore College, PA
One of Dr. Meta Mendel-Reyes most outstanding achievements at Swarthmore College has been the creation of the Democracy Project, a service-learning initiative designed to increase students’ understanding of and commitment to democracy and citizenship.
Dr. Mendel-Reyes’s courses empower students to become active in community organizing and social change. Dr. Mendel-Reyes has published several books and journal articles on education and democratic theory and practice.
Stephen R. Smith, M.D., M.P.H.
Associate Dean for Medical Education
Brown University School of Medicine, RI
For three decades, Dr. Stephen Smith has worked extensively in the medical community to expand the focus of both medical students and practitioners to include public health for at-risk members of society. Dr. Smith spearheaded MD 2000, a competency-based curriculum for Brown Medical School, which includes a service-learning component. The MD 2000 curriculum has been a model nationally and internationally in curricular reform efforts and reflects Brown’s commitment to produce socially-responsible physicians.
Rachel A. Willis, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of American Studies;
Adjunct Associate Professor of Economics
University of North Carolina at
Chapel Hill, NC
Dr. Rachel Willis’s work on staff-to-child ratios in day care centers has won acclaim from the Governor of North Carolina and resulted in new state standards. Dr. Willis helped to develop a highly successful student-funded and student-run service-learning program and helped found the Center for Public Service at UNC-Chapel Hill. Through her innovative methods, Dr. Willis has been able to integrate service components into several of her courses, including “Women and Economics.” She is currently writing a book about work and family in a global economy, using interviews collected in several hosiery mills.