March 17th, 2010

On Monday, APP sponsored the Learning Community Boot Camp at Calhoun Community College in Decatur. Colleagues from three of our higher education partner institutions – Wallace State Community College, Northwest-Shoals Community College, and Calhoun – participated in a day of sharing and brainstorming about learning communities, service learning, and civic involvement.

Dr. Ruthanna Blake Payne leads our teams in strategic planning

Facilitators Dr. Ruthanna Blake Payne, Learning Communities Coordinator at Auburn University, and Dr. Robert Exley, president of Snead State Community College, led participants in strategizing and planning their own learning communities. Each group had different goals such as engaging freshman, encouraging developmental students, or forming other small communities within their campuses.

Dr. Robert Exley leads an afternoon session on service learning

The level of dedication and creative thinking that professors and administrators at our partner institutions bring to their work is inspiring. They know that lower-income and underachieving students need the investment and attention available from smaller learning communities to flourish in higher education. Plenty of evidence shows that service learning and learning communities improve retention rates and overall student achievement.

Special thanks to Dr. Kermit Carter, Mattie Burks, and Calhoun State Community College for hosting the event, and to our fabulous facilitators from Auburn and Snead State.

Read more about service learning and civic involvement in our Resources section.

Posted by Robyn Hyden