Calvin College

CALVIN - Minds in the Making

Strengthening Liberal Arts Education by Embracing Place and Particularity

Case Study

Transforming a nursing department by emphasizing place and partnership


Community engagement in higher education can vary in how it is operationalized.  One type of engagement may involve a faculty member forming a relationship in the community so that a course could educate students while providing a service to the community.  A different type of engagement may involve not only providing a community service but having place shape course content and experiences.  Is there a way that higher education can increase the breadth and depth of community engagement beyond a single course or single faculty member?  Should higher education be striving for more?  What would it look like to have a level of engagement where place actually informs what you do as a department?

 The following case study provides a unique example of how place shaped a department, curriculum, student practice, and faculty scholarship. 


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