Volunteerism and Service Learning is responsible for assisting our students on their path to becoming engaged citizens by creating, fostering, and facilitating curricular and co-curricular service experiences. Our staff partners with students, faculty, staff, and alumni as well as nearly 300 non-profit agencies to develop and create service opportunities that contribute to the holistic development of KSU students while addressing community needs.
We encourage any student, staff, or faculty member that is interested in volunteering, providing or utilizing service-learning opportunities, or becoming engaged and involved while addressing community needs, to visit the Volunteerism and Service Learning office!
Carmichael Student Center, Suite 267
Office Hours: Monday - Friday | 8am - 5pm
The office of Volunteerism and Service Learning (VSL) seeks to foster lifelong active citizenship in students through transformative learning and community engagement, such as direct service and service learning opportunities that address community needs.
VSL envisions a campus in which all students become active citizens through engaging in meaningful service in partnership with our community.
As a result of their involvement with initiatives through the office of Volunteerism and Service Learning, students will be able to:
- Identify areas of community need and the means in which to address it
- Recognize one's civic responsibility to participate in one's own community and the broader society
- Articulate a heightened sense of civility, justice, and respect for those around them
- Define and practice the tenets of positive social change
- Gain exposure to societal needs and systemic issues
The primary models that infuse VSL’s philosophy of developing active, engaged citizens through positive social change and service are: The Social Change Model of Leadership1, Break Away’s Active Citizen Continuum2, and Kolb’s Experiential Learning Model3.
Social Change Model
Social Change Model1
Established in 1994, the social change model approaches leadership as a purposeful, collaborative, values-based process that results in positive social change. It is based on the principle that anyone can lead and leadership can be developed in all who seek it, with the following assumptions:
- Leadership is socially responsible—it impacts change on behalf of others.
- Leadership is collaborative.
- Leadership is a process, not a position.
- Leadership is inclusive and accessible to all people.
- Leadership is values-based.
- Community involvement/service is a powerful vehicle for leadership.
The model incorporates the “seven Cs,” a set of values that break down into three categories—group values (collaboration, common purpose, and controversy with civility), individual values (consciousness of self, congruence, and commitment), and the community value of citizenship—which serve as values and practices of leadership, interacting in various ways to foster positive social change.1
1 Astin, Helen S. and Alexander W. Astin. A Social Change Model of Leadership Development Guidebook Version III. The National Clearinghouse of Leadership Programs, 1996.
Active Citizen Continuum
Active Citizen Continuum2
Another developmental model, the active citizen continuum tracks growth through four progressive roles:
Member (not concerned with their role in social problems)
Volunteer (well-intentioned, but not well educated about social issues)
Conscientious citizen (concerned with discovering root causes; asks why)
Active citizen (community becomes a priority in values and life choices)2
Kolb’s Experiential Learning Model
Kolb’s Experiential Learning Model3
David Kolb’s experiential learning model defines learning as “the process whereby knowledge is created through the transformation of experience. Knowledge results from the combination of grasping and transforming experience.”3
According to Kolb, a learner should experience all four modes of the experiential learning model in sequence, but the sequence may begin anywhere in the cycle. The four modes are incorporated in all of the programs and activities within our office:
Active experimentation (planning; trying out what you have learned)
Concrete experience (doing; having an experience)
Reflective observation (reviewing; reflecting on the experience)
Abstract conceptualization (concluding; learning from the experience)3
3 Kolb, D. A. (1984). Experiential Learning: Experience as the source of learning and development. Englewood Cliffs: Prentice-Hall.