The Edward Ginsberg Center for Community Service and Learning

stairs shows levels of engagement from learning basics to building skills to applying principles

We help prepare undergraduate, graduate and professional students for community-engaged learning in both curricular and co-curricular settings to support their community-engaged work, in courses, research, or student organizations.  Our sessions are designed to be interactive, engaging and tailored to the skills participants need to engage with communities depending on community contexts and participants' levels of engagement. In 2019-2020 we offered over 100 sessions for students across the university. 

Use our Support Request Form to request a workshop!

Contact us at Ginsberg.Engage@umich.edu if you have any questions about how we can work with you to prepare your students for community engagement. 


How do I...

Learn more about the kinds of workshops offered by the Ginsberg Center?

  • We offer a range of workshops based on participants' awareness and level of community engagement, from students who are particpating in a one-day service event for the first time to those who are leading out their own community-engaged projects. For each level, Ginsberg staff can work with you to tailor workshop content to your goals. 
  • Introduction to Community Engagement
    Participants learn key principles of effective community engagement when engaging for the first time, often in introductory courses or programs​
    For students who are:
    • Beginning to explore ways to engage with communities
    • Attending one-time service events
    • Returning regularly to sites for direct service but not towards any particular project
  • Applying Principles to Build Skills
    Participants develop and practice skills to effectively apply key principles of effective community engagement towards a tangible outcome. Engagement could involve repeated or sporadic interactions in communities but not necessarily developing a project with community partners.
    For students who are leading projects for a course, program, or student organization:
    • Establishing a new partnership with community partners
    • Designing or consulting on community-based projects
    • Assisting with a research project
  • Applying Principles to Self-Directed Projects
    Participants apply the basic principles of community engagement and learned skills to complete a self-directed project or research.
    For students who are responsble for completing undergraduate or graduate level:
    • Fellowships
    • Capstone experiences
    • Community-engaged research

1. Adapted from Howe, C. W., Coleman, K., Hamshaw, K., & Westdijk, K. (2014). Student Development and Service-Learning: A Three-Phased Model for Course Design. The International Journal of Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement, 2(1)

View upcoming public workshops open to all students?

Use online materials, such as the Community Engagement MOOC, to prepare my students?

  • Ginsberg staff collaborated on a Community Engagement MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) to provide content, videos, activities and reflections for learners to better understand community engagement, and how they may more effectively engage in their practice.
  • The MOOC can be taken in its entirety or any portion or combination of modules to supplement or replace preparation you already offer. 
  • As part of the U-M Community, you and your students receive full and uninterrupted access to the course, as well as the ability to gain a certificate of completion, for free. You'll also have access to the course after the course run ends (it becomes a course within your "Archived Course" tab in edX). It is not possible to track individual student participation at this time. For questions about technical aspects of the MOOC, please contact the development team at  CollabForChangeMOOC@umich.edu.
  • Ginsberg Center staff can help you to identify which of the five modules might work best for your community-engaged context. We can also offer a follow-up workshop for your course, research or program to build on the ideas and activities from the MOOC. Use our Suppport Request Form to request a follow-up session

Request a workshop for students involved in my course, research or program?

  • To request a workshop, please complete our Support Request Form
    • If you have not worked with us before, requests must be submitted 1 month in advance
    • For repeat requests, requests must be submitted 3 weeks in advance
  • Potential workshop topics include, among others:
    • Entering, engaging and exiting communities in reciprocal, ethical, and respectful ways
    • Applying principles of community engagement
    • Best Practices for community-engaged research
    • Social identities, power and privilege
    • Collaborative leadership in community engagement
  • We also provide follow-up workshops
    • One of our Graduate Academic Liaisons can be assigned to your class to offer multiple sessions tailored to your course context to build on and apply the ideas and principles mentioned in an intial session or in the Community Engagement MOOC.
    • Please indicate your interest in a follow-up session on the Support Request Form.

Prepare my students to make one-day service events more effective?

  • Prepare your participants to maximize benefits for both your program and community partners:
    • Check Yourself Checklist: a quick list of things to consider before engaging
    • Community Engagement online course: a more in-depth preparation with 5 modules that can be taken separately or all at once.
    • Ginsberg Center staff can answer any questions about these resources, and provide advising/consultation/support on how you can move forward as a group. We can also answer questions about logistics, reflection, and training prior to the day of service.
  • Use the guide for volunteering in groups that breaks down the process from start to day of.
  • If you share the link with your students, be sure to remind students to explain why they are reaching out to your organization, including information about the course and/or program