Service Leadership Cohort: Gustavus Adolphus College’s Presidents’ Student Leadership Award Recipient

Service Leadership Cohort

The Service Leadership Cohort (SLC) is a service group consisting of 6 students that conducts community based research in the co-curricular arena. The Cohort works in partnership with other students, staff/faculty, and community partners to examine challenges that further the access to and quality of service for Gustavus student-led programs that impact the community of St. Peter. The SLC is in its pilot year, and has participatory qualitative research projects regarding Benchmarks of Service – examining high standards of service that directly impact the service programs and set the standard to be achieved; Learning Outcomes – establishing explicit learning outcomes for students who participate in the on-going service programs offered by the Center for Servant Leadership; and Internal Partnerships – exploring how the on-going community service programs can work more intentionally in partnership to share best practices and support each other in providing quality service. All of the research conducted by the Cohort results in proposals supplied to the Center for Servant Leadership. The Cohort conducts research through interviews with program coordinators, program volunteers and participants, and community partners to ensure equal voice for all vested parties in the development of proposals.
Through their work, the SLC increases the capabilities of students engaged in service and deepens their own ethic of service and commitment to the community. By the nature of their efforts, the SLC engages in a reciprocal partnership with the community – each side has a voice in the process and the outcomes are mutually beneficial; the community receives a better quality of service, while the students deepen their understanding of partnership, increase their own leadership capabilities, and serve the community to create a more just and peaceful society.

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