Past Service Learning Projects

Take a look at the service projects completed by past GPS students. In these projects, students have developed community enegement, critical thinking, and organizational skills in their service learning activities.


2014-2015 Projects

The following projects were completed during the 2014-2015 academic year in GPS courses.

Calvin & Hobbes Tour the Philosophical World:

The Calvin and Hobbes GPS students helped boys and girls with their homework and other school assignments through the Boys and Girls Club while also organizing and running a bake sale to raise funds to support the Campus Closet. 

The Campus Closet provides basic living necessitates for UWGB students in need.  Both projects were an exploration of the social aspect of personal identity and growth.


Hopscotching the World of Non-Profits:

Students in Hopscotching the World of Nonprofits worked with the NEW Scholars program of Scholarships Inc.  A college readiness program for under-represented students, the NEW Scholars work on reading, writing, and character while earning credits toward financial scholarships.  The UWGB students worked hands-on with the NEW Scholars for two afternoons, getting to know the middle schoolers and joining in with their book club, writing, and team building activities.  On a Saturday morning in April, UWGB students, who are under-represented college students themselves, sat with these kids’ parents and shared what college was like for them and how they got there.  Finally, the NEW Scholars visited campus for a tour by the GPS students, complete with a stop to see the friendly staff at the AIC and an actual dorm room (a highlight)!   The visit concluded with a large circle where middle school students asked questions and UWGB students shared their own words of wisdom about what college was like, including words of wisdom ranging from “sleep is important!” to “there are lots of people at UWGB to help you” and “try to get into the GPS program because it’s made such a difference for me!”

Love & Lust in America:

Creating the Rosemary Bartell Scholarship - When we began our work on the service learning project in spring of 2015, something unexpected happened – our faculty mentor's mother passed away. Dr. Bartell shared with us the story of her mother, a single parent who dropped out of college after her first year and never had a chance to go back after becoming a single parent. We also learned about how difficult it was for single parents, especially mothers, to complete college. So we decided to help Dr. Bartell create a scholarship for single parents at UWGB, in her mother's name. During the spring semester we held bake sales, distributed flyers in our home communities, created a Facebook page for the scholarship, and worked with the Office of Advancement to develop the scholarship. We raised almost $5,000 during the semester, and our goal is to begin offering the scholarship in 2017-18. If you're interested in learning more about our work, or the scholarship, click here for our web site.

What’s for Sale: The History and Politics of American Consumer Culture

Our service learning project is focused on teaching elementary school kids the value of sustainability.  Our fall term course, “What’s for Sale,” examined the growing power of consumer culture to define our political and social life in the United States.  One of the assignments in the fall term asked students to keep a “consumption journal” for a week to consider their own relationship to consumer culture.  As a result of the awareness that emerged from that assignment, as well as class discussions on the environmental impact of consumer culture, the class decided to focus on the theme of sustainability in the spring service learning project.  We have partnered with Howe Elementary School, in Green Bay, and have been working on gardening projects with students in the school’s YMCA-led aftercare program.  Howe is a racially diverse, predominant low-income school (90% of the student body qualifies for free or reduced-price lunch). Our goal has been to connect with these students around the issue of gardening and recycling. We have planted seeds in recycled containers (egg cartons), and have been working with the students to gather milk cartons and empty plastic soda/water bottles that we can repurpose into planters.  Our hope is to introduce the themes of “reduce, reuse, recycle” to the students, and to let them experience the joy of getting their hands dirty in gardening.  Their seedlings (flowers and vegetables) will be transplanted into the school’s outdoor garden later in the spring.  In addition, our hope is that by connecting with these students through the gardening project, we may bring them one step closer to envisioning themselves as future college students.

Wild: Nature and Modern Culture:

In Professor David Voelker’s (Humanistic Studies/History) Spring GPS Workshop, students created a service learning project in collaboration with Aldo Leopold Community School. This project grew out of Voelker’s fall first-year seminar course called “Wild: Nature and Modern Culture,” which explored the relationship between humans and nature from the perspective of the humanities (including philosophy, history, religious studies, First Nations Studies, and literature).  One of the issues that the class considered was the lack of awareness or connection that many modern Americans feel with nature, as the result of our consumer economy and our technology-driven, fast-paced lifestyles.  With these ideas in mind, his students developed an educational project.  The class of fifteen first-year students visited Aldo Leopold school twice in April to take fifth graders on a nature walk, followed by a reflective art project, and to use a game to help keep them up-to-date on recycling policies in our region.  The overall goal was to increase their knowledge and appreciation of their connection to the natural world.  UWGB alumna Crystal Osman served as a Community Mentor for the class.

2013-2014 Projects

Children’s TV: More than ABC’s:

The Children’s TV First Year Seminar class chose to volunteer at Freedom House during the Spring 2014 semester.  Freedom House is Brown County’s only homeless shelter that serves all types of families with children.  One of their needs is to have volunteers prepare and serve meals to their residents.  Our class divided up into four groups and each group had the task of preparing a meal that would serve up to 50 children and adults.  This task involved constructing the menu, grocery shopping for enough food to feed this large number of people and then preparing and serving the meal at Freedom House.  We offered four different meals on the four nights we served dinner: breakfast for dinner, tacos and chips/salsa/guacamole, chicken alfredo, and pizza.  The students also chose to create a game or activity to complete with the children at Freedom House after the dinner was over.  These activities included an Easter Egg Hunt, a piƱata, as well as coloring, crafts and games. At the end of the semester, we rented a bus to take all interested parents and children from Freedom House to the Green Bay Children’s Museum.  Most of the families that went on this outing had never had the chance to visit the museum and the students were able to play with children at each exhibit and experience with them this awesome Green Bay site. In all, this opportunity gave the students the opportunity to see homelessness first-hand and to serve the families with children that live at Freedom House. 

Politics in Sports:

Politics in Sports class worked with Hopscotching the World of Non-Profits class on a literacy project. Over the Winter Break and early Spring, we collected children books for ages 4-11. Next, came sorting the books, according to the grade for which they would be appropriate. But the best part was delivering the books and actually reading them to the elementary school kids in the Boys and Girls after school program. Kids were excited to see college students coming to their schools, reading and playing with them and telling them about our university. Many took home the books for their siblings. One boy had 9 other brothers and sisters and funding each of them a book they would like the most was a lot of fun! In total, we delivered over 2,000 books and visited 5 local elementary school during April of 2013.

Hopscotching the World of Non-Profits:

Students in Hopscotching the World of Nonprofits joined with Politics and Sports to work with the Boys and Girls Club of Green Bay after school programs.  Students in the two UWGB classes collected over 1,000 children’s books, journals, and special pens and delivered them to high-need elementary schools around Green Bay.  When delivering the books, the GPS students sat on the floor and read to the young children in the after school program.  UWGB students were surprised to see a lot of signs around the school in Spanish, and learned firsthand about the so-called achievement gap in elementary school, i.e., that the reading and math scores of lower income children or minority children are lower than kids of higher income households or white households.  They learned that many of the children did not have books in their homes, and were pleased to be able to promote reading among the kids.  

Hugging Trees: Humanity, Morality and the Planet

In the spring of 2014, students in the Hugging Trees class partnered on a project with the Brown County Recycling Facility to improve recycling rates in our county. They worked with the facility to identify materials that were being under-recycled in the community, by sorting and weighing materials coming in to the facility. From this work, Brown County was able to develop a tip sheet sent out to county residents to clear up misconceptions about what can be recycled, specifically identifying those materials that the class found to have been under-represented in current recycled materials.


 Love & Lust in America:

Project Hope - Students in Love & Lust in America partnered with House of Hope, a local shelter for homeless pregnant and parenting young women. Having learned about the challenges educational and financial challenges facing young mothers, the class decided that they wanted to assist this local resource that provides not just a place to live, but assistance completing education, developing financial literacy and parenting skills, and finding safe permanent housing and stable employment. Over the semester, students held clothing drives on campus in order to provide House of Hope residents with the clothing for young women, and raised funds and purchased personal care and baby care items to stock the House of Hope pantry. Students also raised funds to complete a playground and grounds rehab, and at the end of the semester installed a sandbox for the children, planted new flowers throughout the property, and completed a spring clean-up of the grounds.