Students have the option to choose courses that offer a service learning component. Service learning integrates community service with academic instruction as it focuses on critical, reflective thinking and civic responsibility. Service learning programs involve students in organized community service that addresses local needs, while developing their academic skills, sense of civic responsibility, and commitment to the community. Service learning is related to but does not include cooperative education, practicum, or internship programs. Students often see this as an exciting and rewarding way to learn.
Courses that are taught through service learning are designated as optional service learning (OSL), in which a student can choose to do a service learning assignment or not, or as a required service learning (RSL) course, in which the student must do a service learning assignment. Students that have questions on service learning should contact Dr. Peter R. Sawyer, department chairperson of History, Philosophy and Social Sciences at (518) 629-7690, David Van Aken, Assistant Director of Service Learning at (518) 629-4738 or speak to their academic advisor.