Rollins Recognized for Commitment to Service-Learning

October 21, 2011

Florida Campus Compact Award
Rollins representatives attend the Florida Campus Compact 20th Anniversary Awards Gala.

Through countless initiatives and programs, Rollins has consistently proven its drive and commitment to service-learning and engaged scholarship. In honor of that commitment, Florida Campus Compact (FL|CC) recognized Assistant Director of Community Engagement Meredith Hein and Associate Professor of History Julian Chambliss. This marks the fifth consecutive year that a Rollins faculty or staff member received such recognition. FL|CC also recognized Rollins for its exemplary commitment to engagement by awarding the College with a special 20th Anniversary Engaged Campus Award.

FL|CC is a membership organization of over 50 college and university presidents committed to helping students develop the values and skills of active citizenship through participation in public and community service. The ultimate goal of FL|CC is to develop educated and active citizens to sustain our participatory democracy. Each year, through an extensive application process, the organization recognizes various staff, faculty, community members and campuses for their achievements in community service.

“Florida Campus Compact has recognized that Rollins has many individuals committed to active citizenship both inside and outside the classroom,” stated Director of Community Engagement Micki Meyer. “Rollins continues to be recognized on a national level because of the institutional commitment to our community.”

Meredith Hein
Assistant Director of Community Engagement Meredith Hein receives the Community Engagement Educator Award. Photo by Annamarie Carlson.

Julian Chamblis
Associate Professor of History Julian Chambliss (right) accepts the Service-Learning Faculty Award. Photo by Annamarie Carlson.

Due to her significant contribution to community engagement at Rollins, Hein was recognized with the Community Engagement Educator Award, representing Independent Colleges and Universities in Florida. This award is given to one outstanding individual in each of the three higher education sectors for their contributions to community engagement by inspiring a vision for service on the campus while supporting faculty, students and campus-community partnerships.

“During the five and a half years I have been a member of the Rollins community, I’ve understood the importance of being both a teacher and a learner,” said Hein. “My role has helped me learn, develop and grow as an educator. I am honored to receive the Engaged Educator award as it reiterates how lucky I am to put my passions into action every day.”

Hein has changed the way this campus operates. In addition to assisting with the creation of Join Us in Making Progress (JUMP), a student-led organization that consistently brings students and campus organizations together to work with over 25 community partners, Hein also works with other student organizations including Rollins Relief and Making Lives Better, engaging over 50 percent of the student body through meaningful and effective service. To bridge the gap between academic and student affairs, Hein worked extensively to create the Citizens Take Action: Rollins Immersion Program, allowing faculty, staff and students to engage in weekend (and sometimes week-long) experiences of education, reflection and action. The above are just a glimpse into the impact Hein has had on the Rollins campus and the community as a whole.

Chambliss was awarded the Service-Learning Faculty Award for contributing to the integration of service-learning into the curriculum through innovative approaches to service-learning, engaged-scholarship and institutional impact based on the Principles of Good Practice for Service-Learning Pedagogy as defined by the Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning.

Chambliss has conceived and coordinated service-learning projects to explore urban planning, housing development and urban popular culture in Winter Park. In the last few years, he has focused extensively on the Hannibal Square Community Land Trust. Using a multi-tiered approach, he incorporates students into his community projects by working with students in 100-level courses on an archival basis and students in 300-level courses on more in-depth historical housing and policy issues. Chambliss is also a past-president of the Florida Conference of Historians (FCH), current coordinator of the FCH’s Media Arts and Culture Special Interest Section, a board member for the Society for City and Regional Planning History (SACRPH) and former co-chair of the Urban Network for the Social Science History Association (SSHA).

Chambliss admits that he did not win this award on his own. “I received a lot of support from the Office of Community Engagement (OCE), my department and my colleagues related to service-learning,” he said. “Things have changed on campus as a whole. These types of activities are not outliers anymore. It is a testament to how far this institution has gone in embracing service-learning.”

Rollins received a surprise during the Florida Campus Compact 20th Anniversary Awards Gala on Thursday, October 20, held at the UCF Arena in Orlando. One of only six colleges and universities in the nation to receive Presidential Awards in the 2010 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll, FL|CC said “Rollins was in a class of its own” as the only Florida school to garner the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to community service. In October 2007, Florida Campus Compact recognized Rollins with the organization’s first-ever Overall Statewide Award and this year further honored the College with a special 20th Anniversary Engaged Campus Award.

“This recognition is a testament to the hard work of the dedicated staff in the Office of Community Engagement and the students, faculty and staff who bring service learning to life and make a positive difference in the communities we serve,” said President Lewis Duncan.

Established ten years ago, the Rollins College Office of Community Engagement focuses on three strategic priorities at Rollins: engaged scholarship through the curriculum; campus-wide engagement through service, civic-engagement, and activism; and community partnership and development through learning opportunities.

Meyer is proud of Rollins achievements and growth in community engagement over the years. “The reason a college or university wins an Engaged Campus award is because so many areas of the campus are engaged in service work. It is not an individual office or its work, it is a collective effort of many people focused on creating progress and change.”

Learn more about Florida Campus Compact.

By Annamarie Carlson (Class of 2014)

Office of Public Relations & Community Affairs
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