The Center for Serve-Learn-Sustain (SLS) at Georgia Tech is committed to the creation of sustainable communities. We work to educate students through classroom and co-curricular activities and real-world learning opportunities, all designed to foster community engagement and participation. In pursuit of our commitment to supporting community engaged learning toward sustainable community development, we offer support for a broad spectrum of opportunities, from guest lecturers for courses to direct service opportunities to large-scale, longer-term projects. Please feel free to connect with us via in-person appointment, e-mail, or phone call if we can provide you with further course assistance.
The Community-Engaged Courses Playbook is designed to facilitate constructive engagement and to mobilize community-led development and change through course- and research-based partnerships. The guides in this play book will help faculty: scope projects and partnerships that address human and community priorities as defined by the community (local, state, national, or global), often through experiential learning opportunities; structure reflection explicitly designed to foster learning and development that connects the engagement experiences with course goals, including learning about the larger social issues behind the needs an engagement is addressing; and build reciprocity between the community partners and the course so that both community priorities and student learning goals are met.
This tool was contributed by Chris Le Dantec and Kate Diedrick.
This tool uses the ReGenesis case study from Spartanburg, South Carolina, to explore what it means to "create sustainable communities" through broad stakeholder engagement. Spartanburg was found to be experiencing higher levels of health issues due to chemical plants and other polluting factors in the area. ReGenesis, a community-based organization led by community member Harold Mitchell – now a member of the South Carolina legislature –worked with the EPA to use their Collaborative Problem Solving methodology to expose the inequity and turn the community around.
This tool was contributed by Christian Braneon and Delaney Rickles. The affiliated case study, "ReGenesis—A Practical Application of the CPS Model," was written by the EPA.
The Smart City Kit is a set of hands-on materials that supports collaborative scenario building activities. These activities can foster a greater understanding of smart-cities as socio-technical systems. Through these activities, students should develop an appreciation for how smart cities technologies fit or don’t fit into the fabric of everyday life in the city. The kit requires no background knowledge in design or participatory methods. It can be customized for specific technologies or scenarios, and it can be used across the curriculum. The Smart City tool is available for check-out from the Serve-Learn-Sustain office.
Each kit imagines a team of 5-10 students, but it is possible to make a single kit stretch over twenty students. Email us for more details, and to inquire about check-out.
The Parkway Community ABCD Exercise invites students to engage in an exercise to explore what it means to take an asset-based approach to community development (“an ABCD” approach), versus a “needs” or “deficit” approach. Students are broken into groups and given a description of the Parkway Community. One group is given a list of assets while another group is given a list of needs. Students come up with recommendations for a nonprofit to engage with the community and then compare and contrast the recommendations. The exercise concludes with an explanation of ABCD principles.