Salt Lake City, Utah
June 23, 2018
June 23, 2018
July 27, 2018
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis study abroad students, who learned about sustainable practices in businesses, industries and municipalities in Germany returned to Indianapolis to assist a community partner to start a recycling project in Indianapolis.
Germany like some other European countries have been working on sustainable issues in businesses, industries and within their municipalities for decades. The country’s results are impressive in sustainable urban structures and planning, renewable energy usage, national recycling, sustainable transportation systems, and green policies all at the local, state and federal levels, which in turn has led to economic growth and innovation within the country (Buehler, Jungjohann, Keeley, & Mehing, 2011).
Service learning is defined as “course-based, credit bearing educational experience in which students (a) participate in an organized service activity that meets identified community needs and (b) reflects on the service activity in such a way as to gain further understanding of course content, a broader appreciation of the discipline, and an enhanced sense of civic responsibility” (Bringle & Hatcher, 1995).
This past summer’s study abroad students had the opportunity to participate in a service learning project. The project was to incorporate a recycling program for a local church’s festival, which is held for three days in the month of July. The study abroad students had just returned from learning about a society that spends enormous efforts in the area of recycling, reusing, and reducing. Students that volunteered were to work with the local recycling facility to acquire the right type of containers for the project, work at the festival assisting with the recycling program, and observe the other festival activities during the three-day event to research other opportunities for sustainable practices for the next year’s festival or church campus as a whole.
In this paper will describe the students experience of studying abroad and learning about sustainability and then applying that knowledge in a service learning project back home. In addition, this paper will describe the ongoing student research project recommending a sustainable approach for the church and school on the whole campus.
Buehler, R., Jungjohann, A., Keeley, M. & Mehing, M. (2011). How Germany Became Europe’s Green Leader: A Look at Four Decades of Sustainable Policymaking. Solutions. Vol 2, Issue 5.
Bringle, R. & Hatcher, J. (1995). A Service Learning Curriculum for Faculty. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning 2, 112.
McIntyre, C., & Camp, R. A., & Fox, P., & Patrick, S. (2018, June), A Study Abroad Course Leads to Service Learning Project Paper presented at 2018 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/29725
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