Community Leadership at Aquinas College

Community Leadership Courses

CL100 Exploring Community Leadership (4) PSC

This introductory course for the Community Leadership major and minor introduces students to the concepts of community, service, civic responsibility, social justice, social entrepreneurship, and leadership in public and nonprofit organizations. In addition to regular class meetings, students will spend at least thirty (30) hours, or 2-3 hours per week, in volunteer/service-learning situations relevant to careers in public, social service, or non-profit organizations. Students will use these volunteer/service-learning experiences coupled with course readings, in-class discussion with the instructor, community leader guest speakers, and peers to begin developing a “reflect, act reflect” framework for community engagement.

CL201 Leadership for Social Change (1)

This course offers students opportunities to explore what it takes to create social change through service-learning experiences and leadership development. This course is intended to raise consciousness and increase knowledge surrounding a community issue, provide service opportunities to students surrounding that issue, and guide small cohorts of students in attempts to address that issue.

CL209/SY209 Sustainable Cities and Environmental Justice (3)

In this course, students investigate sustainable cities and environmental justice from the perspectives of social science scholars, focusing on the meaning of the global environmental crisis for particular urban areas. Throughout the course, students will identify, describe, and evaluate multiple theories and findings that attempt to explain and uncover how cities strive to be sustainable but fall far short of the demands for environmental justice. This course will enable students to attribute multiple social science theories and findings accurately, to take a position based on these theories and findings, to raise and answer counterpoints to these theories and findings, to pose solutions to environmental-based urban problems, and to use sustainability and environmental justice as frameworks for problem-solving.

CL300 Fund Development and Grant Writing (3)

This course provides an introduction to fund development, grant research, and grant writing. Through effective partnership with a nonprofit organization and hands on experience, students will learn about the principles, practices, and strategies of fund development and write a complete grant proposal by the end of the course. Prerequisite: CL100

CL395 Ireland Community Aides Internship (3)

For four decades, Aquinas College has been providing students study abroad opportunities in Tully Cross, Ireland to connect with its history, culture, landscape, and most importantly, its people. Modeled on the highly successful “Teacher’s Aide” Internship, this course provides students with the opportunity to spend fifty (50) hours working as interns for key community development and human services programs in the Renvyle Peninsula community. The community internships provide students with the opportunities to learn about rural community development and, through partnering with local non-profit groups, students gain meaningful experiential knowledge about how community leadership has revitalized this rural and traditionally under-served region. Students interview for positions and work with community leaders to find suitable placements. In addition to serving as interns, students report their experiences back to an Ireland Program Director for formal evaluation.

CL396/SY396 Sociological Practicum in Community Leadership (4)

In this field placement course, students spend at least 150 hours, or 10-15 hours per week, in service-work/learning-work situations relevant to careers in public, social service, or non-profit organizations, in addition to regular meetings with the instructor. This practicum provides the practical experience for deepening community engagement and raising important questions about society and social justice. Prerequisites: CL100 or SY101. This course is not accepted for the Social Science General Education requirement.

CL398 Readings in Community Leadership (variable)

This is an individually negotiated program of readings on a selected topic established by contract between instructor and student. This course requires the prior approval of the Community Leadership Director.

CL399 Independent Project in Community Leadership (variable)

This is an individually negotiated project in Community Leadership established by contract between instructor and student. This course requires the prior approval of the Community Leadership Director.

CL400 Community Leadership Capstone Seminar (3) SC

This course builds on the “reflect, act, reflect” framework of community engagement started in CL100 and continued in CL396. Students utilize their recent experience in CL396 to develop an analysis of how the agency and the larger community might more effectively address suffering, social problems, and social injustice. In concert with the student’s organization, community leaders, and the instructor, students reciprocate the time and training they received at their organization by completing at least one higher-level community project that increases the ability of the organization to fulfill its mission and each student’s ability to impact the community (e.g., program development, program assessment, fundraising, grant writing, direct action, legislation, social entrepreneurship, policy-making, social advocacy, activism, legislation, social entrepreneurship, policy-making, social advocacy, activism, mutual aid, direct service, social work, letter writing/petitioning campaigns).