Madison House and the UVA writing department will be partnering in the spring of 2017 to offer a unique one-credit liberal arts course to current Madison House student leaders and student volunteers.
Titled, "Words Matter: Writing, Leadership, and Community Engagement" (LASE 2559) and taught by Kate Stephenson, the course will explore the relationship between the written word, being a leader and being actively involved in the community. Madison House student leaders will draw on their current experiences to reflect on their involvement with community programs and their role as liaisons between the University and the Charlottesville community.
"We are excited to partner with the UVA writing department to offer an opportunity for Madison House leaders and volunteers to connect their experiences in the community to their academic and professional pursuits," says Director of Community Engagement Rachel Winters. "Participating in a course with ample opportunities for writing and reflection will provide students a dedicated space to make meaning of their community engagement experiences, and the potential effect it has on them as students and citizens."
Students will collaborate with a community partner and the professor to develop a writing project that explores the intersections between social issues, politics and civic engagement. These projects range from research papers to photo essays, oral histories or digital writing. Participants will also learn how to present leadership experiences on a resume and in a professional interview—demonstrating how writing lives beyond the classroom and evokes change in the community.