Connecting the college and community for the purpose of fulfilling a community need, while developing a deeper sense of civic engagement and academic learning within our students—that’s community engagement! The Community Engagement Department works with students, instructors, and community organizations to identify opportunities for partnership. By working together, Western can fulfill community needs, provide personal enrichment education (community education), and give students a deeper academic experience.
Making an impact is what Western Technical College strives to do. Influencing, growing, building, educating, and helping are all ways to impact the community, and students across the college are doing that in a large way! From designing homes for Habitat for Humanity to providing free computer support to the public at large, Western is engaged and committed to impacting our communities. Check out our annual Community Engagement reports for data and stories about how Western is serving to make a difference.
Each year Community Engagement awards one faculty member with the Distinguished Service Learning award. Faculty members are selected based on the standards below and receive the award at the annual Celebration of Community Engagement.
Faculty Award Standards
- Service-learning is significant to the program or course.
- Service-learning addresses several course competencies.
- Service-learning transfers theory to practice.
- Instructor’s service-learning project was a new project or significantly improved over time.
- Service-learning addresses community need.
- Community engagement can provide specific examples of the impact on community and students.
- Critical reflection occurs.
2018 Award Recipient
Cindy Prindle, IT Instructor, Business Education Division
Cindy started at Western in August of 2014 and immediately embraced all of the service learning projects existing in her course load, some which were starting in four weeks. Over the last four years, Cindy has evolved each project to make the learning components stronger and to weave servant-leadership principles throughout. In all of the five service learning courses she teaches, Cindy is intentional about reflection, creating strong connections to her course competencies, and mentoring students through the experience. Cindy has seen significant improvements in students’ academic performance because of the service learning activities.
Previous Award Recipients
2017: Ann Lichliter, Human Services Associate Instructor
2016: Christine Krueger, Occupational Therapy Assistant Instructor