Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Thursday, December 16, 2010
"Committee member Rajashree Ghosh leads our growing connections with the offices of Experiential Learning and Community Service, and is the committee’s contact person with faculty, students and staff at the university. Rajashree reports that “There have been tremendous efforts by the Brandeis entities in engaging with Waltham as much as we at WSRC have had. As a first step I initiated conversations with members of the Brandeis community in an effort to share and learn from our mutual experiences. My in depth conversations with Audra Grady, who is the Program Administrator for Experiential Learning at Brandeis University, led to her participation in our meetings and events. I have also initiated discussions with faculty members at Brandeis. It is during these discussions an opportunity to present my work on social development in India presented itself. I was invited by Prof. Laura Goldin to speak to students in Women, Environment and Social Justice on March 2, 2010. Her testimony represents ongoing and continued efforts to connect with Brandeis faculty and students.”
Rajashree also writes a monthly column in the Waltham edition of Boston.com. Her article “Investing in Community,” (from Oct. 20, 2009) is HERE."
Check out the article here:http://walthamwsrc.wordpress.com/
Laura Goldin's class Greening the Ivory Tower is a great experiential learning class. On campus, the class examines the University’s buildings, grounds, operations and infrastructure -- from energy use and sewage disposal to landscaping and food services -- to identify and analyze the environmental impacts created by the campus population. Students work in groups to conceive, design and implement workable “greening” projects intended to create measurable benefits to the campus and local community, collaborating with Brandeis administration, staff, local officials and others. Toward the end of the fall semester, students presented their project work at the Greening Project Showcase. Students also created Greening Class Project websites residing on the Brandeis University website to serve as a resource to the community.
A student in this class, Yifan Wang, created her final project as a video including all the class projects throughout the semester. Check it out!
Wednesday, November 24, 2010
A Day of Experiential Learning
On October 21, I attended the Experiential Learning Expo, held in the Shapiro Campus Center. I talked to two different students who went abroad over the summer. Each had very different enriching and interesting experiences.
Shannon Festin ’12 is a Health: Science, Society and Policy major. For eight weeks over the summer, she interned with Las Damas Voluntaries at El Hospital Nacional de Los Ninos in San Jose, Costa Rica. Shannon found her internship through researching the AIDE website. She ultimately decided she wanted to go to Costa Rica for two reasons: to improve her Spanish skills and, more specifically, to explore why Costa Rica is known as having a health care system that is comparable to that of the United States.
She discovered that the reasons had to do with Costa Rica’s greater focus on health and education – not as much money goes to the military as is does in the U.S. From this experience, Festin realized that she wants to work in health care in her future career, particularly with marginalized groups and children. The children who she cared for in the hospital had a range of illnesses, from cancer to burns, as well as children with Down’s syndrome and other complications from birth. Festin decided to intern abroad rather than in the U.S. because she wanted to see another country’s health care system and study how a country’s culture impacts the health of its citizens. For example, according to Festin, Costa Rica is more “laid-back” than the U.S., as well as more focused on family and religion. It was interesting to her to explore the different ways in which these factors influence the health care system in that nation.
Chia Jorento ’11 is an English and Italian Studies double major. This past spring and summer, she lived in Siena, Italy. She studied abroad in the spring and then stayed on for the summer with Hiatt’s World of Work summer funding program. Jorento found this internship through her study abroad program, which had an internship component. For the summer, she stayed with the same organization she interned with during the spring semester. As someone with a strong interest in education, Jorento had an enriching experience teaching English to 3rd and 4thgraders. She prepared materials, worked with the kids to perform skits and scenes in English, and recorded language videos to help her students learn English. In her Brandeis classes, Jorento still has the opportunity to speak Italian regularly. Through this experience, Jorento had a change in life plans. She now knows that she wants to live abroad after graduation, preferably in Siena. She is passionate about education and hopes to teach long-term.
The Experiential Learning Expo was a great opportunity to see the work that other students have done while abroad. It was interesting to see how these experiences have influenced the career plans of these two presenters. Working abroad gives one the opportunity to be deeply involved in another culture, an experience that Brandeis students should not pass up.