With what kinds of groups or organizations does the OSL partner?
The OSL partners with non-profit organizations, such as schools, churches, or community-based organizations and small businesses just to name a few. Essentially the OSL wants to work with groups that serve their community. We tend to work with groups in the Joliet and Chicagoland area because they are closest to our campuses; however, the OSL is open to working with community members beyond these areas, as well. Please contact Laura Wilmarth Tyna, Director of Service Learning, if you have a service learning project which you think may be a fit for Lewis University.
What are the expectations for each community agency?
The community agencies will be asked to communicate in a timely fashion, sign an agreement with Lewis which states both parties’ responsibilities, provide orientation and site supervision for our students, and to let the OSL know if there are any problems or ways we may be of further assistance. (Of course, we also love hearing about insights and positive experiences.)
How long will it take to for students to arrive at our organization?
Academic service learning is tied to a course, so project planning can take 6 months to a year to coordinate; however, in some cases a project has been arranged in a matter of weeks.
What if service learning is not a good fit for my organization, but I still need assistance?
The OSL is part of a broader partnership on campus called the Community Engagement Cooperative (CEC). The CEC is made up of several Lewis offices which engage students different in the community. From student life (large groups of students) to ministry (faith-based community engagement) to career services (internships), if you have a project that is not a good fit for service learning, we will refer your project to the appropriate office.