This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
Higher education


CALIFORNIA LUTHERAN UNIVERSITY/MEGAN STONE Service learning Lutheran colleges and universities teach love of neighbors


But through love become slaves to one another (Galatians 5:13). God’s work. Our hands. (ELCA tagline).


I


f asked to imagine a college student, would you picture someone seated in a classroom? Would you also imagine that person stocking shelves at a food pantry, mentoring


urban youth, training service animals to assist disabled vet- erans or making breakfast for the homeless at a church? That’s the real picture of what students are up to at ELCA


schools like Lenoir-Rhyne College, Hickory, N.C.; Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Wash.; Wartburg College, Waverly, Iowa; and Concordia College Moorhead, Minn. At ELCA colleges and universities, the classroom


includes the community and education includes learning how to serve the needs of God’s people. It’s an educational experience that takes seriously Martin Luther’s wisdom: “Every matter, if it is to be done well, calls for the attention of the whole person.” Service learning connects in-class readings, theories


and discussions to real-life practices, people and problems as students serve in the community. It enriches students’ learning experiences, teaches civic responsibility and strengthens communities. At Lenoir-Rhyne, students in Charlotte Williams’ first-


year experience class work with Project Potential to men- tor underprivileged high-school youth and help create a


48 www.thelutheran.org By Jacqueline Bussie


college-going culture. Nearly 3,000 miles away, at Pacific Lutheran, students


in Anna Leon-Guerrero’s sociology research methods class collaborate with members of Trinity Lutheran Church, Tacoma, and food pantries to better execute and expand their feeding ministries. Wartburg students enrolled in William Soesbe’s leader-


ship class partner with Retrieving Freedom Inc., a nonprofit that trains service animals to assist veterans and children with special needs. Seth Engelbrecht, a 2013 Wartburg graduate, remembers helping place Traveler, a black Lab- rador retriever, with a female veteran who suffered from severe post-traumatic stress disorder. “It is one thing to hear about the problems on the news


or read about them in a book, but it is something entirely different to see and experience them in person,” Engel- brecht said. “[RFI] is truly saving lives every day and that is one of the most humbling things I have ever experienced.”


Understanding their true purpose Service-learning experiences help students understand the true purpose of their education and lives. They also help ELCA-related schools fulfill their holistic missions. For Pacific Lutheran this means educating students for lives of thoughtful inquiry, service-leadership, and care for others, their community and for the earth. Service learning, said Joel Zylstra, director of its Center for Community Engage-


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68