Author Archives: rbishop

Davis Foundation Annual Report Highlights CC Projects for Peace Winners!

Last summer, Colorado College students, Lucy Marshall and Eva McKinsley, travelled to a region of Central Peru that has been plagued by insurgent violence and instability to promote specialty coffee production and invest the proceeds in local education.

First, Lucy and Eva experimented with alternate methods of coffee production at a coffee farm in Ancahuachanan. Then, they turned their attention to education bringing the Internet to the local school, donating laptops and a projector to two area schools, supplying educational computer programs, games, sports equipment, school supplies, and so much more. Finally, on the farm, Lucy and Eva cleared and roofed a disused area, cleaned and repaired old washing wells for coffee, and installed new equipment. They eventually reached an essential agreement with the farm’s owner to donate a portion of the increased profits from the specialized coffee to continue supporting the schools.

Collaborative for Community Engagement and the whole Colorado College would like to congratulate Lucy and Eva for making such a difference in a disadvantaged community in Peru by promoting education, empowering members of the coffee industry, and promoting community growth and conflict resolution. We are very proud to have students who care about the larger world and put so much energy into creating projects that benefit people around the world! To see the full Davis Foundation annual report, please follow this link http://www.davisprojectsforpeace.org/system/files/media/2017_Davis_Projects_for_Peace%20FINAL.pdf.

Welcome Justice Watch!

Justice Watch (JW) is a new branch of CC Prison Project club that has recently been created and focuses on holding judges and attorneys accountable for fair treatment in courthouses. Justice Watch sends students to the El Paso County Courthouse (located on S. Tejon St.) to observe and report judges’ demeanor. The club’s goal is to make sure that judges are behaving appropriately and are held accountable for bias or mistreatment. JW’s mission statement is “to be the eyes and ears of the community and keep judges accountable for their behavior.” This group offers an opportunity for low time commitment and high impact involvement for students.

One of CCE workers, Julia Bazavluk, recently connected with Key Duckworth, one of the leaders of Justice Watch. We have asked her to share what kinds of activities JW performs, how students can get involved, what the purpose and goals of the group are. Now, in the form of a interview, we are going to share what we have found out.

Julia: Hi Key! Thank you so much for being willing to share information as well as your thoughts and hopes about Justice Watch with us. To start, please tell us what inspired the creation of the JW at CC?

Key: Hi Julia! Thank you for reaching out to me. Starting this group on campus was not my original idea, but an idea pitched to Gail Murphy-Geiss by a former student. Gail has been sending students to the courthouse as part of her FYE for many years. By creating a Justice Watch club, we are hoping that we can get enough data to compile a report for the Chief Justice.

Julia: Is CC JW going to be connected to Justice Watch Inc. (https://www.judicialwatch.org/) ? If yes, in what ways, and how would you plan to cooperate with them?

Key: We are not affiliated with this organization. Justice Watch did, however, start as a now-defunct non-profit in the Springs community (https://www.guidestar.org/profile/72-1586290). We hope to bring Jan Weiland and other community members back into the organization once it is more established.

Julia: This sounds like a good plan, and we hope you will be able to accomplish it! How do you think Justice Watch will impact CC students, culture, and atmosphere on campus?

Key: I think that Justice Watch will make CC students more aware of what truly goes on in the court system. Additionally, if we succeed in gathering enough data to present a report to the Chief Justice, I think the experience will empower students to be more politically active by showing them that they can actually have an impact on judges behavior. (In the past, Justice Watch reports have resulted in 2 judges being removed from juvenile court for inappropriate behavior.)

 

Julia: Wow, we didn’t know that JW has had such a big impact in the past! But what can CC students bring into the club, and how can they get involved?

Key: Students can get involved by contacting any of the group leaders. We will give students a rundown on what to expect at the courthouse, how to fill out a data sheet, and how to act while observing judges. After that, they are free to go to court and observe/record data whenever is convenient for them (preferably at least once a block).

Julia: Also, what events, if any, will the club organize? Do you have specific ideas/dates in mind?

Key: We will try to meet at least once a block during the first week although we don’t have specific dates yet.

Julia: Are there any groups on campus that might be similar to Justice Watch? If yes, would you be able to cooperate with them and what would you do?

Key: I am not aware of any.

Julia: It’s good because it means that you are going to be a very unique organization that can potentially attract a lot of CC students. What will be an approximate schedule of the meetings? How big of a commitment will it be for students who get involved?

Key: We will try to meet as a group once a block. This can be as high or low of a commitment as student choose — they are free to observe as many dockets and judges as they want.

Julia: It is awesome that you provide a lot of freedom for the students do decide their personal level of commitment. But what do you feel will be the biggest issues/problems facing the club?

Key: I think our biggest issue will be student reliability. Because we have people go whenever is most convenient, I worry that some students will forget to or decide that walking twenty minutes is not worth it. I am hoping to start a group message of some sort so that people can arrange carpools or choose times to go in groups as I think this might keep people more accountable.

Julia: Oh, I see. I am sure that there will be students who are interested in the court system and a fair treatment of people there. Finally, where do you envision the club to be in five years?

Key:  In five years, I hope that we will be able to compile enough information to write a report every year. I also hope that we will have community members involved.

Julia: I hope you will achieve this goal, and we wish you best of luck!

Key: Thank you so much!

2018 Community Engagement Winter Fair

This past week, the CCE held our second community engagement fair for the 2017-18 school year.  Like the event in the fall, this event provided CC students with an opportunity to connect with representatives from local non-profits and educational partners of the Collaborative for Community Engagement (CCE) office. The CCE helps students go off campus and engage with the Colorado Springs community in meaningful ways through community service activities such as tutoring, volunteering at a soup kitchen, or raising money for charities. By bringing some of these organizations to our campus, Colorado College gave students a chance to make a difference not just on campus, but on a larger scale in Colorado Springs area.

Below are groups that had tables at the fair.  Students are welcome to reach out to them directly or use the CCE to make a connection. Additional contact details and organization information can be found  on our Summit site at https://apps.ideal-logic.com/cce.

Rocky Mountain Field Institutehttps://rmfi.org – Dedicated to the conservation and stewardship of public lands in the Southern Rocky Mountain region through volunteer-based trail and restoration projects, environmental education, and restoration research. Contact information: Molly Mazel.

Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Centerhttp://pptrc.org – Utilizing the unique and therapeutic attributes of the horse, their mission is to serve those with diverse needs, empower change, foster resilience, and nurture whole health through sustainable and innovative programs. Contact information: Chester DeAngelis.

Friends of the Peakhttp://ww.fotp.com – A group with the goals of providing a unified, pro-active voice for the preservation and restoration of the natural environment of Pikes Peak, promoting and enhancing recreational opportunities and visitor experiences that are in harmony with that environment, and promoting awareness of and education about Pikes Peak. Contact information: Susan Jarvis.

Early Connections Learning Centershttps://www.earlyconnections.org – Focused on providing high quality, comprehensive early care and education for all. Contact information: Ashley Groves.

City of Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Services –https://coloradosprings.gov/department/76 – The mission of City of Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Services is to serve residents and visitors through stewardship of distinctive cultural, natural and recreational resources; provisions of exceptions facilities and programs; and effective leadership and collaboration for the vitality and economic health of our community. Contact information: Brian Kates.

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountainshttps://www.plannedparenthood.org –  The Mission of Planned Parenthood is to provide comprehensive reproductive and complementary health care services in settings which preserve and protect the essential privacy and rights of each individual, to advocate public policies which guarantee these rights and ensure access to such services, to provide educational programs which enhance understanding of individual and societal implications of human sexuality, to promote research and the advancement of technology in reproductive health care and encourage understanding of their inherent bioethical, behavioral, and social implications. Contact information: Nico Wilkinson.

Pikes Peak United Wayhttp://www.ppunitedway.org – An organization committed to improving the quality of life in the Colorado Springs community. Contact information: Deanna Toney.

Pikes Peak Children’s Museum – pikespeakchildrensmuseum.org – Strives to develop and operate a innovative children’s museum serving the Pikes Peak region, envisioning the museum as a dynamic place for discovery and imagination and sparking a passion for lifelong learning. Contact Information: Nohea March.

Goodwill – discovermygoodwill.org – Goodwill strives to enhance the dignity and quality of life of individuals and families by helping people reach their full potential through education, skills training, and the power of work. Contact information: Grace Vigil.

Ronald McDonald House – rmhcsouthercolorado.org – Keeps families with critically ill children close to each other and provides care and resources they need when they need it most. Contact information: Emily Odiwuor.

Care and Share Food Bank – careandshare.org – Care and Share Food Bank believes that no one should go hungry. Every day, they provide food to our partner agencies across Southern Colorado to serve our neighbors in need because well-fed communities are better for us all. Care and Share exists to ensure that the one in eight Southern Coloradans at risk of hunger have access to enough healthy and nutritious food to thrive. They know that children without adequate access to food cannot develop successfully, families cannot plan for their future, and seniors find it more difficult to remain independent. Contact information: Eric Pizana.

Peace Corps – peacecorps.gov – Peace Corps is a service opportunity for motivated changemakers to immerse themselves in a community abroad, working side by side with local leaders to tackle the most pressing challenges of our generation. Contact information: Karyn Sweeney.

Pikes Peak Habitat for Humanity – pikespeakhabitat.org – Brings people together to build homes, communities, and hope. Contact information: Iassa Ring.

CASA – Provides a volunteer’s voice in court for children who are victims of abuse, neglect, or domestic conflict and promotes awareness of these issues to ensure safe and permanent homes. Contact information: Uriko Stout.

Marian House Soup Kitchen – ccharitiescc.org – In response to Jesus Christ’s call to affirm the value and dignity of each human life, to build solidarity within the community, and to advocate for justice for the poor and vulnerable, Catholic Charities of Central Colorado humbly engages in the ministry of charity for those in both economic and spiritual poverty so that all – staff, volunteers, and clients –  may fully achieve their God-given potential. Contact information: Doug Rouse.

Colorado Springs CONO – cscono.org – Dedicated to improving Colorado Springs’ quality of life through neighborhoods. Contact information: Rachel G.

Children’s Literacy Center – childrensliteracycenter.org – Strives to build a life of success through a foundation of literacy. ONE child at a time. Contact information: Pamela Polke.

Kids in Motion http://csdance.org/kids-in-motion/ – 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that promotes dance in the Pikes Peak Region across generations. Their mission is to present a diverse range of world class dance forms, to educate young dancers, and to provide outreach to underserved children and their families. Contact information: marketing@csdance.org

 

A big thank you to everyone involved, and let’s hope next year’s fairs are just as successful!

Content by Julia Bazavluk
Edited by Richard Bishop

Dream Outside the Box

Dream Outside the Box

Beginning this semester, look out for a new student organization – Dream Outside the Box – here at CC. Dream Outside the Box (DOTB) is a non-profit organization in Colorado Springs that works to propel at-risk youth onto a higher education trajectory by mobilizing college students to engage children in imaginative careers and extracurriculars. DOTB work with children in existing youth development organizations to provide:

  1. exposure to new activities and career options to broaden horizons beyond stereotypical career aspirations such as rap or football by inviting college student organizations to share their respective interests, such as chemistry & fencing
  2. long-term development opportunities via weekly lessons, camps, and apprenticeships through partnerships with private organizations
  3. opportunities for our youth to embrace service starting at age 5

Every Dream Outside the Box program is designed for dual impact: to propel youth in dream deserts toward higher education while cultivating leadership skills among collegiate volunteers. By producing imaginative programming in dream deserts, college students broaden the horizons of K-5 youth while developing skills to contribute toward the disruption of cyclical poverty.

CCE staff has recently talked to the initiator of the Dream Outside the Box club at CC, Turner Black. We would like to share in this blog what we have find out about the purpose and aspirations of DOTB at CC in the form of an interview.

Julia (CCE worker): Hi Turner! Thank you so much for cooperating with us and sharing this invaluable information about DOTB club that you have started. To begin, please tell us what inspired you to found DOTB at CC?

Turner: Hi Julia! Thank you for helping me promote this organization at CC. Turner: When I was signing up for clubs and applying to participate, I had trouble getting accepted to most of the programs, as they were all quite full. I also happen to simply love and believe in this program, and therefore I thought it would be a great idea to bring it to CC community. I decided to bring DOTB to CC because I know this community on campus can be a bubble sometimes, and I think it is important to be able to create meaningful connections with members of the community, especially when that can be done by reaching out to our youngest generation.

Julia: I have heard that the very first DOTB organization was founded in Columbia University. I was wondering if CC DOTB is going to be connected in any way to Columbia’s club?

Turner: We are not connected to Columbia’s DOTB group in any direct way. However, we are connected with a group that was founded at Missouri State University by a friend of mine when she was a freshman in college. She is now a successful adult who helps to run these programs all across the country.

Julia: This is awesome! I hope she will be able to help you promote your organization at CC.  How do you think this club will impact CC students, culture, and atmosphere on campus?

Turner: I hope this club will allow even more students to get involved with youth in the community in fun, variable, and creative ways. Because our model requires a different student group or organization to get involved each week (as our “Dream Buddies”), a large number of students are able to be involved just a couple of times, when they are available, and are able to become exposed to volunteering with youth without a huge commitment. Along with that, we really strive to create and maintain a consistent group of volunteers (“Volunteer Buddies”) that are willing to make time every week to come and see their “Dreamers” (students) and to truly create a bond with one or two students so that the students have some consistency and something to look forward to each week that includes the same people.

Julia: And what do you think CC students can bring into the club, and how can they get involved?

Turner: CC students can bring energy, creativity, organizational skills, and management skills- all of those things would be helpful. However, the only true requirement for students to bring is a heart full of love ready to pour out to the kids each week. Getting involved is as easy as texting (817) 889-7303 or signing up for our organization on Summit! We will have an interest meeting in early next semester, and will also be at the winter activities fair. There is also an app called DOTB that anyone can download to sign up to volunteer, get more information, and watch adorable videos of previous students sharing their experiences and newfound dreams.

Julia: It looks like there are a lot of ways for CC students to connect to DOTB! Also, What events, if any, will the club organize? Do you have specific ideas/dates in mind?

Turner: I am not quite sure yet, although I do know we will have a fun interest meeting in the first block of next semester, and will weekly be going to a local school or YMCA (not 100% sure which one yet) to do exciting and meaningful activities with elementary school aged students.

Julia:  Are there any groups on campus that might be similar to Dream Outside the Box? If yes, would you be able to cooperate with them and what would you do?

Turner: Yes, there are other groups on campus that work with students, and I would enjoy collaborating with them, especially if they are working with students in middle or high school. I believe that bringing in students of other ages to talk to the elementary schoolers and answer questions about higher education would be a really cool opportunity, especially because we need to inspire them to stay in school until graduation if we want to inspire them to pursue higher education, whatever that may look like. The only issue I foresee with collaborating with other groups is the transportation of students and volunteers, as our budget is somewhat limited in that respect at the moment.

Julia: Talking about the commitment level this club will require, what will be an approximate schedule of the meetings? How big of a commitment will it be for students who get involved?

Turner: We will meet once a week for the first three weeks of block, and then will likely take one week off for fourth week of each block. Each meeting will be located near campus, and transportation will be available for those without cars. Every session will take about an hour and a half total, as the session with students is officially one hour, but volunteers are expected to show up about half an hour early to go over the day’s activities and prepare the supplies – that way, everyone is on the same page when working with kids individually, and we will be able to have group discussions afterwards, as everyone performed the same tasks. Overall, this will not be a terribly time consuming commitment, and, at least for me, it always seems to be far more fun than stressful, as the students are so sweet and loving.

Julia: So I assume there will be opportunities for CC students to get off campus with the club?

 

Turner: Definitely! We will have weekly sessions at another location off campus, so there will be lots of reasons for students to get off campus.

Julia: What do you feel are the biggest issues/problems facing the club, if any?

Turner: At this point, the main issue I foresee is not being able to recruit enough committed people that will want to come each week, as there are already many clubs on campus. However, I have hope for this club, as I truly believe that once people try it out, they will fall in love with it!

Julia: I hope that many of CC students will be very interested in signing up for DOTB, since even though there are a lot of clubs at CC, there are none similar to DOTB in its purpose. FInally, where do you envision the club to be in five years?

Turner: In five years, I envision the club still in action, with a well-rehearsed curriculum and a stable group of committed students leading it. I hope at this point, we will be able to reach out to our previous students and see how they have come in school, and possibly bring them back into our wing of support and involve them in giving back to their community by doing service through the DOTB programming and mentoring other students to continue pursuing their biggest dreams.

Julia: Thank you so much for such thorough responses! I am very excited to see your passion and see what great things DOTB will do in the future!

Turner: Thank you! DOTB will try its best to live up to our expectations and hopes.

 

Content and interview by Julia Bazavluk

Farewell and Best Wishes

Sarah Marshall will be leaving the College at the end of this semester, and we’d like to take a moment to express gratitude for her contributions to the CCE and to wish her the best of luck moving forward.

Sarah joined the CCE in the fall of 2012 after making a cross-country move from Ohio, where she taught English and reading for four years at a junior high school.  Hired as the Youth & Education Program Coordinator, Sarah brought a wealth of knowledge around working with K-12 youth, gained from her work experience and BS in Education.

As Youth and Education Program Coordinator, Sarah oversaw student organizations and programs that partnered with local K-12 schools toward the end of supporting the personal and academic development of youth.  In this capacity, Sarah strengthened the College’s relationship with local schools – particularly District 11 – and critically contributed to the maintenance and success of numerous ongoing partnerships.  Additionally, Sarah strengthened and expanded our Public Achievement program, working with multiple school partners to educate and empower youth to be active citizens in their community. Sarah also led the way for the College’s efforts to establish clear guidelines and expectations for college students on how to best work with youth populations, increasing the capacity of the College and the CCE to ensure that CC students are well-equipped to engage with minors in ways that foster and protect their safety (physical and emotional).

Most recently, Sarah built on these years of experience in a new position at the CCE as the Civic Leadership Program Coordinator.  In this position, Sarah advised all community-engaged student-led initiatives at CC.  She worked actively to develop leadership opportunities for CC students, and has forged supportive relationships with student leaders – serving as an invaluable resource for more than 20 student groups on campus.

After December 15th, Sarah will pursue new opportunities that afford her the chance to grow personally and professionally.  While she will be leaving CC, Sarah will continue to grow as a professional in higher education. She will continue a MA program at UCCS in Leadership with a concentration in Student Affairs in Higher Education, and is expected to complete the degree in 2019.

The CCE is deeply grateful to Sarah for her 5 years of service.  Please join us in wishing her all the best of in every future endeavor!

— Jordan Travis-Radke, Director of the CCE

Do you donate blood? You could help save someone’s life!

Donating blood is one of the easiest ways to give back to the community.Did you know that CCE staff schedule multiple blood drives on campus every year? Bonfils Blood Center and Penrose-St. Francis Blood Bank both come and accept donations for two days each semester, and Bonfils is here for another day each summer. You can find their welcoming and professionally trained staff in Worner.

Donating blood is highly regulated by the FDA and is very safe. Sterile, disposable needles and supplies are used once and are safely discarded after each donation. You cannot get HIV/AIDS or any other disease by donating blood.

From the time you first arrive, the process takes less than an hour – but typically only 5-10 minutes of that will be actually be the donation. The rest consists of a short medical history and mini-physical.

Typically, donating blood has four steps:

  1. Registration: You will be asked to provide basic information about yourself such as your name, address and age. You will then be instructed to read or review important donor information.
  2. Medical History Interview: After answering a series of personal questions about your medical history, a blood bank professional will escort you into a private interview area. There you will be asked additional confidential questions and your medical history assessed for donation eligibility.
  3. Mini Physical and Blood Donation: A drop of blood will be taken from your finger and analyzed for red blood cell concentration. This process will assure blood bank staff that your red blood cell count is adequate for you to donate. Your blood pressure, temperature and pulse rate are taken. After all requirements are met, a phlebotomist will cleanse and sterilize an area of your arm. A sterile needle is then inserted in your arm to collect the blood. The collection process will take about 5-10 minutes.
  4. Refreshments: After the donation is completed, you will relax and enjoy juice and tasty snacks. This recovery time will aid your body in replacing the volume you lost during the donation.

Donor & Medical Requirements:

In general, donors must:

  • be in good health
  • weigh at least 110 pounds
  • be symptom free of cold or flu
  • be 18 years of age (if 16 or 17-years-old, may donate with written parental consent)
  • From now on – TATTOOS ARE ACCEPTABLE if the tattoo was applied in a state-regulated shop within the last 12 months

Many medications are acceptable for blood donations including those for high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes. If you were deferred in the past from donating blood, please try again. Most deferrals are temporary and deferral restrictions may change.

Interested in participating?

Penrose-St. Francis will be staffing the next blood drive on Wednesday, December 6th and Thursday, December 7th, from 12:00pm-3:00pm in the Worner Lounge. Penrose Blood Bank accepts donors at age 16 with parental consent. Please call 719-776-5822 if you have questions.  All donors must have a driver’s license, and walk-Ins are welcome.

While you are deciding whether you should donate blood or note, here are some interesting factsabout blood donation in the United States:

  • 5 million Americans will a need blood transfusion each year
  • Someone needs blood every two seconds
  • Only 37 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood – less than 10 percent do annually
  • One pint of blood can save up to three lives
  • 5 gallons: amount of blood you could donate if you begin at age 17 and donate every 56 days until you reach 79 years old
  • If there are 100 people in a room, 46 will have type O blood, 40 will have type A, 10 will have type B and four will have type AB
  • Shortages of all blood types happen during the summer and winter holidays
  • Giving blood will not decrease your strength

For more information about blood donation and other programs that Bonfils Blood Center and Penrose Hospital have visit their websites: http://bonfils.org/ and https://www.centura.org/locations/penrose-st-francis-health-services/community-programs#giving-blood.

Information provided by Bonfils Blood Center and Penrose St. Francis Blood Bank, compiled by Julia Bazavluk.

What is BreakOut?

What is BreakOut? To find out more about this incredible organization, we talked to Ali Baird and Anthony Siracusa. Ali is a current CC student and the BreakOut Co-Chair, and Anthony is the CCE’s new Engaged Learning Specialist. They talked about what BreakOut does, why it is so special, and what they have planned for the organization in the future.

Ali described the organization and what makes it important to Colorado College.

BreakOut is a community engagement organization at CC that maintains relationships with many non-profits in the surrounding Colorado Springs community, such as the Marian House, Greccio Housing, and Family Promise. We rely on those relationships to organize Saturday, block break, and alternative spring break trips for students. Our trips are intended to introduce CC students to as many organizations as possible that work in a variety of different issues, including homelessness, environmental stewardship, and food security. Through BreakOut trips, we hope that students find organizations of interest to then engage in sustainable, long-term community engagement. In a sense, BreakOut is a stepping-stone for continued service work.

Anthony discussed how he thinks BreakOut is special to CC.

I am still very new to CC – and thus still learning every day about the many outstanding opportunities afforded our students.  But it seems that BreakOut is unique here at CC in that it combines travelling with community engagement.  Through our Block Break program in particular, students are able to explore Colorado and its surrounding regions while engaging in meaningful work with a community partner. ASB is very similar in that regard, and increasingly we want to help CC students learn about the people, places, and issues they encounter while doing their community work.

Anthony further discussed the importance of the block break and ASB trips for CC students gaining a sense of place.

The Block Break and ASB trips both allow students to spend time “learning in place” – that is, to spend time thinking about challenges and issues that emerge in particular locations.  For example, our students traveled recently to Mission: Wolf on a Block Break trip.  For some students, the Mission: Wolf trip was an opportunity to build on knowledge they developed in natural sciences course about habitat preservation and the protection of animal populations.  For other students, the trip was a hands-on introduction to these issues.  Being in the mountains, amidst wolves that are being supported as they transition back into the wild, provided students with an engaged learning opportunity under the guidance of staff experts at Mission: Wolf.
For ASB this year, we are exploring the possibility of a trip to Puerto Rico for hurricane relief.  In preparation for the trip, we are hopeful to discuss larger issues that arise when thinking about hurricanes – issues like community resilience amidst climate change and the history of Puerto Rico as an American territory.  We are hopeful that these student learning opportunities can supplement the experience of being in Puerto Rico and engaging in relief work.
The Mission: Wolf and ASB trips both offer CC students the chance to learn in place – to better understand a challenge or an issue by not only conducting research and reading, but to develop a relationship with a local partner who can also serve as a guide and educator to our students as they engage in community work.

In terms of future goals for the organization, Anthony is hoping to work on making BreakOut trips a more in-depth learning experience.

One thing our student leaders have discussed is strengthening the learning component on our trips.  This would include workshops and orientations to places and issues in advance of a trip, routine dialogue and discourse about what students are learning and experiencing on a trip, and sufficient time to debrief and reflect at the conclusion of trips.  BreakOut has been an excellent venue for students to explore issues and challenges, and increasingly we are hopeful that the trips can be an opportunity for students to discern and reflect and think about how they can grapple with the challenges facing our communities.

Ali stated three main goals for the coming year:

  1. Listen to student input and plan trips that match student interests!
  2. Create a stronger community of trip leaders and participants on campus so that we can brainstorm ideas!
  3. Provide more trip leader trainings and send more trips out!

Excited about the possibility of pursuing community engagement through BreakOut? According to Ali, “students can get involved by signing up for any of our trips on Summit, attending one of our leader trainings, or reaching out to one of our leaders: Ali Baird, Amy Daugherty, and Jesse Shaich. We would be happy to speak with anyone who wants to get involved, especially if you have any trip ideas!”

 

Contact Ali Baird, BreakOut Co-Chair at a_baird@coloradocollege.edu

Or Anthony Siracusa, Engaged Learning Specialist at asiracusa@coloradocollege.edu

Want to find out more? Visit the CCE website here:

https://www.coloradocollege.edu/offices/cce/students/

Interviews and content by Claire Derry.

Annual Community Engagement Fair a Success

On October 11th from 11:30-1:00 pm Colorado College hosted its annual Community Engagement Fair in the Worner Lounge with a number of local non-profits.  This was an opportunity for students to connect with representatives from non-profits and educational partners of the Collaborative for Community Engagement, an organization on campus that helps students engage with the Colorado Springs community in meaningful ways through activities such as volunteering.  By bringing some of these organizations to our campus fair, Colorado College gave students the chance to participate as citizens of the community outside of the campus.

Some of the groups that had tables at the Fair:

Rocky Mountain Field Institutehttps://rmfi.org – Dedicated to the conservation and stewardship of public lands in the Southern Rocky Mountain region through volunteer-based trail and restoration projects, environmental education, and restoration research.

Springs Rescue Missionhttps://www.springsrescuemission.org – A group that focuses on mobilizing the community to provide relief, rehabilitation, and empowerment services to those in need.

Pikes Peak Therapeutic Riding Centerhttp://pptrc.org – Utilizing the unique and therapeutic attributes of the horse, their mission is to serve those with diverse needs, empower change, foster resilience, and nurture whole health through sustainable and innovative programs.

Concrete Couchhttp://concretecouch.org – A non-profit that works with kids and community groups to create public art, build community, and create environments and experiences that humanize our world.

Friends of the Peakhttp://ww.fotp.com – A group with the goals of providing a unified, pro-active voice for the preservation and restoration of the natural environment of Pikes Peak, promoting and enhancing recreational opportunities and visitor experiences that are in harmony with that environment, and promoting awareness of and education about Pikes Peak.

Southern Colorado Health Networkhttp://www.coloradohealthnetwork.org – Colorado Health Network (CHN) is a statewide organization in Colorado, serving nearly 4,000 individuals living with HIV/AIDS, and those at risk, as well as other program specific populations.  CHN provides innovative, individualized services to those most in need, educates high risk populations, and advocates for social and health care equity.

American Cancer Societyhttps://www.cancer.org -The American Cancer Society is on a mission to free the world of cancer.  Until they do, they’ll be funding and conducting research, sharing expert information, supporting patients, and spreading the word about prevention.  All so we can live longer and better lives.

Early Connections Learning Centershttps://www.earlyconnections.org – Focused on providing high quality, comprehensive early care and education for all.

City of Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Services – https://coloradosprings.gov/department/76

Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountainshttps://www.plannedparenthood.org –  The Mission of Planned Parenthood is to provide comprehensive reproductive and complementary health care services in settings which preserve and protect the essential privacy and rights of each individual, to advocate public policies which guarantee these rights and ensure access to such services, to provide educational programs which enhance understanding of individual and societal implications of human sexuality, to promote research and the advancement of technology in reproductive health care and encourage understanding of their inherent bioethical, behavioral, and social implications.

Memorial Hospitalhttps://www.uchealth.org – We improve lives.  In big ways through learning, healing , and discovery.  In small, personal ways through human connection.  But in all ways, we improve lives.

Pikes Peak United Wayhttp://www.ppunitedway.org – An organization committed to improving the quality of life in the Colorado Springs community.

Additional information on these organizations and others that partner with the CCE can be found on our Summit site at https://apps.ideal-logic.com/cce.

A big thank you to everyone involved, and let’s hope every fair in the coming years is as successful as this one!

 

Welcome our new Engaged Learning Specialist!

We’re pleased to announce that Anthony Siracusa has started working for the CCE as our new Engaged Learning Specialist. We asked Anthony a few questions to get to know him better. Read his responses below!

Q: What brought you to the CCE? 

A: As an undergrad, I was a Bonner Scholar at Rhodes College in Memphis, Tennessee – a place where I later served as the Community Service Coordinator. This staff position in the Bonner Center at Rhodes allowed meant that I oversaw the Bonner Scholars in addition to a bevy of other community engagement programs at the college.  Working at Rhodes led me towards a passion for helping students think about and engage in meaningful community work. So when the opportunity to do this type of work at Colorado College came along, I knew I couldn’t pass it up.

Q: What is your past experience?

A: In 2002, I founded Revolutions Bike Co-op in Memphis with the goal of teaching people how to build their own recycled bicycles.  I worked with people from all ages and backgrounds in an effort to build community while building bicycles.  This experience led me to apply for a Thomas J. Watson Fellowship in 2009 to study bicycle cultures in Western Europe, China, Australia, and Central America.  When I returned to Memphis following the Watson, I wanted to focus more on public policy as it related to sustainable transportation.  To that end, I co-founded Bike Walk Tennessee to organize biking and walking advocates across the state to make policy changes that would create a safer state for people who walk and bike.  Bike Walk TN now has seven local advocacy committees in communities across Tennessee.

Before coming to CC, I also completed a Ph.D. in History at Vanderbilt University. My dissertation examined the evolution of nonviolence in the black freedom struggle in the years before the sit-in movement of 1960.  I have a deep passion for historical teaching and research, and look forward to finding ways to share this passion at CC.

Q: What does your job as Engaged Learning Specialist entail? 

A: My primary job is to work with students outside the formal classroom setting to think critically about the connections between their academic coursework and the work they are doing in the community.  I will work directly with students in the Community Engaged Scholars Program, The Public Achievement Program, the Bonner Pilot Program, the BreakOut alternative break program, and The Colorado College Farm.  I will be primarily responsible for facilitating skill based trainings and other co-curricular workshops that will, if all goes well, help students to deepen their impact.

Q: What is one thing you are most excited about this year?

A: I am most excited about developing relationships with students, faculty, staff, and community partners here at CC and in the Springs.  The best thing about living and working in Memphis for so long was the relationships I developed with people; I made so many friends and grew to know so many colleagues over time. Those relationships gave tremendous meaning to my life and work, and I am excited to find and develop those types of connections both on campus and in the community.

Q: What is your favorite type of candy and why?

A: I don’t eat candy very often…. but when I do, I eat a Butterfinger.  It’s got a great texture, and it was the candy of choice for Bart Simpson – which is likely the primary reason I chose it.

Q: What would your pet say if they had to recommend you?

A: “Please, just sit down and stay a while.  All that work will be there waiting when you’re ready to get back up.  Promise!”

Q: If you turned radioactive and bit someone, what powers would they gain from you?

A: Aside from the general fright this whole scenario invokes, I’d say that an individual bitten by a radioactive me might acquire a passion for the outdoors.  I love to camp and hike and bike, and I would be hopeful that this love for open spaces – rather than some other zombie-like transmitted quality – would be passed on to the unfortunate bitee.

Welcome, Anthony! We are glad to have you with us, and we cannot wait to see what you bring to the office and to the community!

Welcome our new Community Partnership Development Coordinator!

Welcome to our new staff member, Niki Sosa! Niki is our Community Partnership Development Coordinator, and this is her first year at the CCE. We asked Niki a few questions to get to know her better. Read her answers below!

Q: What brought you to Colorado College and the CCE?

A: I moved to Colorado Springs from Pueblo last spring and was working for a nonprofit organization. While I was doing great work for a great cause, I wanted to feel more connected to the work I was doing. I would pass CC on my daily commute and would often think about how great it would be to work on a college campus and empower students to get involved with the community and connect with nonprofit organizations. When I saw the post for the Community Partnership Development Coordinator for the Collaborative for Community Engagement, I knew that’s where I wanted to be and that’s what I wanted to be doing.

Q: What is your past experience?

A: I have a degree in Mass Communications and have worked in the nonprofit sector for fiveyears prior to coming to CC. My connection to nonprofit work starts from when I was a toddler and my dad worked for Bonfil’s Blood Center (and still does). We would visit him at the center, participate in their events and in high school I started volunteering by organizing blood drives and became a blood donor. In college, I became more civically engaged and started working for the Pueblo Hispanic Education Foundation. That’s when I knew I had a passion for nonprofit work. I loved that I was able to take what I was learning in the classroom and apply it directly to nonprofits and causes that I was passionate about.

After college I worked for a few different nonprofits in varying roles from administrative and communications to volunteer management and program delivery. My time with Pueblo Rape Crisis Services was by far the most eye opening, and one where I wore many hats. I primarily worked with volunteers and saw the impact that one individual can have on another and in the community. It was inspired my desire to want to continue working towards empowering and engaging individuals in community impact.

Q: What does your job as Community Partnership Development Coordinator entail?

A: So, this is a good segue… as the Community Partnership Development Coordinator, I am responsible for the strategic development of community partnerships through the CCE. I will be building and maintaining long term and deeper relationships with community agencies to foster engagement opportunities for the CC community. If a student is interested in getting involved with a specific organization or cause to have a meaningful impact, I’m your gal. If a community organization is looking for volunteers or interns to engage in meaningful work, I’m your gal. I will be seeking partnerships that mutually benefit the community and the growth of CC students.

Q: What is one thing you are most excited about this year?

A: I think I am most excited about attending events. Hockey games, lectures, panels, concerts, art shows… I was highly engaged while in college and loved having so many opportunities to connect on campus. I am looking forward to that, connecting to the campus and to the Colorado Springs community.

Q: What is your favorite type of candy and why?

A: Ooh, Ferrero Rocher! They are just so wonderful. Everything about them is perfect.

Q: What would your pet say if they had to recommend you?

A: Hmm, what are they recommending me for? If it’s incorporating their names into popular songs, giving snacks, or head scratches – there’s no one better!

Q: If you turned radioactive and bit someone, what powers would they gain from you?

A: It may sound kind of lame but honestly, I would say patience and empathy. Past personal and professional experiences have really helped me to slow down and take the time to understand.

Welcome, Niki, to Colorado College and the Collaborative for Community Engagement! We are so happy to have you here, and we look forward to seeing what you bring to the office and the community!