Twenty years ago, Gina Bell ʼ00 was building roads and diversifying crops with the Peace Corps in Paraguay. She didn’t expect this work to lead to her current managerial position with the city of Dubuque.
Applied and experiential learning, including civic engagement, is an important and required part of many Pacific undergraduate students’ studies. Under normal circumstances, experiential learning activities take place off-campus at organizational locations across the region. Due to COVID-19 public health requirements, there are new operational requirements for anyone pursuing experiential learning:
- When possible, students will undertake experiential learning that is campus-based or site-free, because limited-site and off-site experiences introduce additional risks such as mingling of populations.
- In cases where students must complete off-campus, site-based experiential learning activities, they are required to submit the “Field Experience Student Acknowledgement of Risk of COVID-19” form in advance.
- All partner sites must be approved for the duration of the pandemic via our Partner Agreements form.
There are many ways that civic engagement takes place on campus or in online environments. Students and partner organizations do not need to complete the forms above for experiential learning taking place on campus or in virtual environments. If you have questions regarding experiential learning or the site approval process, please contact the Director of Applied and Experiential Learning.
McCall Center for Civic Engagement
Pacific University prepares students for lives as informed and active citizens. Civic engagement addresses social, political, and environmental issues in the community through actions that can make a difference on those issues, including service, advocacy, awareness-raising, activism, action-oriented research, deliberative dialogue, electoral participation, and political involvement. We often refer to the Social Change Wheel to describe the variety of activities that fall under the umbrella of civic engagement at Pacific.
The McCall Center for Civic Engagement, or MCCE, works with students, faculty and staff members, campus groups (such as athletic teams and clubs), and community partners to facilitate participation in service, awareness campaigns, fundraising, elections, and other civic engagement activities. The McCall Center provides support to faculty and students in courses with a civic engagement component, especially those that fulfill the College of Arts and Sciences Core requirement for civic engagement, and houses the minor in Social Innovation and Nonprofit Leadership. The McCall Center is nonpartisan and seeks to uphold the university mission to work toward a diverse and sustainable community in which students "think, care, create, and pursue justice in our world."
Civic engagement can facilitate learning, develop active citizens, and improve communities. Students can gain new insights on academic subjects, information for career exploration, and the opportunity to acquire new skills by serving the community. Working with others, you can experience the power of cooperating to create change. And, giving back to the community through a variety of programs and activities can be deeply rewarding.
Our civic engagement program relies upon a strong network of relationships within the university and throughout Forest Grove, Washington County, and the Portland Metro area. Community partners are welcome to contact us with inquiries, feedback, and ideas. Potential and current partners might both find our new collaborative list of of Pacific contacts for various community connections, resources, and services useful.
To get involved with the McCall Center, come by our office in Scott Hall 110, connect with us on Facebook, sign up for our semi-regular "Civic Action Update" emails, or send an inquiry to email@example.com.
Read our 2018-2019 Annual Report (pdf) for more details about our accomplishments.
The McCall Center for Civic Engagement at Pacific University fosters an engaged campus that connects students, faculty, and staff with community partners to serve the common good, revitalize our community, and facilitate learning within a community context. The Center promotes the value of life-long active citizenship, building a sense of empowerment to effect meaningful social participation, while cultivating the development of critical thinking skills and the capacity to reflect on one’s own set of values.
No matter your interests, skills, passions, or access to resources like time or transportation, we can help you find a way to get involved. Check out the events we have coming up on our Get Involved page. Don't want to miss out? Sign-up for our "Civic Action Update" email and you'll always be in the loop!
Seema Khatcherian ’21 and Karsen Buck ’21 receive the Bevin McCarthy Spirit of Civic Engagement award for their work as the co-founders of a social justice mural in Forest Grove, Ore.
Karen Ara ’21 is one of two students honored with Pacific University’s Tom McCall Center for Civic Engagement Award.