Transylvania University’s location in the heart of Lexington presents our students with many opportunities to engage meaningfully within our community. Our emphasis on mutually-beneficial partnerships with local non-profit organizations allows our students ample learning and growth experiences that also positively impact our local neighborhood.
Our students are engaging with the community through student volunteer teams, community work-study placements, internships, research and special projects. Our efforts are focused on ensuring experiential and service learning that enhances students’ classroom experience through three tenants—learn, engage and reflect. Our community partners serve as co-educators and subject area experts, allowing our students insight into social justice in Lexington.
The Office of Campus and Community Engagement helps connect students, faculty and staff with opportunities to explore and live out our civic responsibility. We encourage all members of the Transy community to question social inequities of the world around them and find meaningful ways to engage within the community to help effect positive change.
We expect members of the campus community to learn about the assets of our neighborhood, so we avoid operating from a deficit model, but rather a model of empowerment and collaboration. We believe that any definition of the liberal arts includes an element of social responsibility both personally and institutionally.
ONGOING ENGAGEMENT OPPORTUNITIES
- Saturday-in-Service – One weekend of every month, the Office hosts a Saturday-In-Service project in the community. Groups and individuals can sign up to join a 2-4 hour volunteer opportunity within the community or with a community partner on campus. A few of our sites include Habitat for Humanity, Catholic Action Center GodsNet, and God’s Pantry Foodbank. Events with community partners include Crimson Christmas, which brings children from the Boys and Girls Club to campus to celebrate Christmas.
- Alternative Break Experiences – The Office offers week-long experiences in a community that focus on a specific social justice area. Our trip focuses on a different aspect of social justice each day. We have intentionally worked to have a “local trip” within Lexington so our students can get to know the services and resources in Lexington.
- Community Clearinghouse – For those community partners in need of volunteers, the Office welcomes opportunities for students to engage. The Office regularly posts volunteer opportunities to students through our weekly newsletter, TNotes and on Inside Transy in the internal bulletin board. Individual students or student groups can join these community efforts at any time.
The office also partners to host several blood drives, Crimson Christmas (in partnership with Big Brothers Big Sisters of the Bluegrass), Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service, Constitution Day and several other annual community-wide events.
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