Students who choose to complete the Civic Engagement Poverty Studies Minor will have the opportunity to combine their passion, curiosity, knowledge, and skills to understand and be a part of the world as civically engaged citizens who are aware of and can ethically and humanely address the complexities that emerge in their field as a result of poverty and inequality. Poverty is complex and as such, no single academic discipline can provide a holistic examination of the issue or solution for addressing the poverty that exists. It takes people from different backgrounds, with differing academic preparation, working together to bring a collaborative understanding of the issue and to make a real difference in the world in which they live. Therefore, this minor, by the nature of its focus, is interdisciplinary. This means that each student can have the experience of collaborating with peers who hold different pieces of the puzzle of how to effectively address poverty. The Civic Engagement Poverty Studies Minor will consist of eighteen credit hours from three required courses and three elective courses. Courses intended for the minor are as follows:
IS 250 Introduction to Poverty Studies (3 credits)
This gateway course will introduce students to academic research, ethnographic studies and current news stories and governmental reports about the nature, causes, and consequences of poverty. Readings, lectures and discussions will underscore the interdisciplinary nature of poverty studies, enhance understanding of what it means to be poor and the interlocking problems that lead to and result from poverty, and increase knowledge about the policies and practices used to prevent and alleviate poverty. Although the emphasis will be on poverty in the United States, the lessons (such as the methodology for measuring poverty) cross cultural boundaries and have relevance for and are, to an extent, interconnected with poverty in other parts of the world. Although this course is intended to be the introduction course for the minor it will offered in a manner that will allow it to be taken as a stand alone course for all students whether they intend to pursue the minor or not.
Experiential Learning (3 or 4 credits)
The experiential learning requirement is designed to get students into the field where classroom concepts come to life, disciplinary boundaries are challenged, and students contribute to community life in a meaningful way. Experiential learning will enhance students' understanding of poverty and prepare them for the final capstone experience. The experiential learning requirement may be satisfied by completing one of the following options:
1) Three one-credit hour Community Service WTE Seminars. Students choosing this option must take each of these designated courses (IS250, IS350 and IS351), one each semester for three semesters. The requirements for each course include at least 100 hours of direct service with an organization addressing poverty and/or inequality in the community; attendance in seminars to explore and process the issues being experienced within the context of how it relates to the students’ academic majors, their core beliefs about themselves and the world around them; and to provide an academic foundation for framing the issues they are addressing.
2) One approved three-credit community based learning or research course. Includes courses and internships taught on campus that include a significant service learning or community based research (CBR) component. The course must be pre-approved by the Center and can be local, national or international in focus.
* Regardless of which option the student selects he or she will be required to participate in a guided reflection seminar facilitated by a staff member of the Center.
Electives (9 credits)
Students must choose at least three from the following course options with no more than two courses in the same discipline. This list is not to be considered exclusive in any way; students who wish to include other courses they feel may be appropriate toward the minor can propose the inclusion of such courses to the faculty and staff of LinC for consideration. The student must include not only the course title but also a written rationale of how he or she sees the course fitting with the overall goal of the Civic Engagement Poverty Studies Minor. New courses developed in any discipline that would be related to the topic of the minor may be added as well.
AL375 Health Care Policy
AN323/SO323 The City and Urban Life
BI203 Human Impact on the Environment*
CN330 Communication in Conflict and Negotiation
CN341 Persuasive Speaking*
CN351 Interpersonal Communications
CN361 Communication in Social Movements
CN369 Critical Studies
EC100 Introduction to Economics*
EC200 Principles of Microeconomics*
EC201 Principles of Macroeconomics*
EC341 Labor Economics
EN110 American Ethnic Literature*
GG151 Urban Geography
HL377 Critical Issues in Health
HI329 The Civil Rights Movements
HI363 Borderlands and Beyond
HS302 Social Change and Advocacy
HS450 Multicultural Issues in Human Services
NU364 Nursing of the Homeless
PH102 Ethics: Introduction to Moral Problems*
PO107 American State and Local Government*
PO305 Public Policy
PO322 Politics of the 1960s to Now
PY325 Community Psychology
SO101 American Social Problems*
SO/AN207 Race and Ethnic Relations
SO/AN 310 Social Class in the U.S.
SO/AN 336 Globalization
SO/AN 338 Strategies for Social Change
SW350 Social Policy and Program Analysis
SW390 Contemporary Issues in Social Work
Students may not use required major courses to fulfill requirements of the minor
* Approved for General Education
IS 401 Capstone Experience (3 credits)
The Civic Engagement Poverty Studies Minor culminates in a capstone course project that connects students’ concerns about poverty to their future careers combined with either a seminar led by Center faculty or a directed study research project by a faculty member affiliated with the Minor and approved by the Director of the Center. Specifically, the options for the capstone experience are:
1) Capstone Seminar Option: The Capstone Seminar is a new course that will involve students in Community Based Research (CBR) to solve problems of various community organizations. Students will come from different majors and will play a role in selecting the topics for focus through negotiation with Community Partners. They will share perspectives of their major disciplines as well as their varied experiences in the field thus ensuring the interdisciplinary nature of the inquiry. Students will engage in various ways with poverty-related programs, communities, and experts to address research needs identified by Center affiliated Community Partners. Students will produce a final research paper and will be expected to present their research in a public venue such as a conference, Apeiron or the WTE Day of Transformation.
2). Directed Research/Independent Study Option: Students may also opt for an intense research or other intellectual experience by enrolling in a directed research or independent study with a faculty member. The research topic and approach must be approved by the Director of the Center prior to the student’s initiation of the research. This is to insure that the research is related to the study of poverty. Due to the number of credit hours required outside of one’s major the directed study course will generally be in a discipline other than the student’s major. Students must contact the professor at least one semester prior to enrolling in the course and write a proposal approved by that faculty member and the Center Director. Students should plan ahead for this option, as faculty and the Center Director will only accept carefully crafted proposals that correspond with their interests and availability and meet the intent of the minor.
In this case the student will produce a product (manuscript, work of art, composition, poster board of research results, research paper, etc.) that can be displayed and/or presented, and will present this product to the members of the Center and others involved in the work (e.g., non-profit organization representatives in the case of community-based research). This presentation must be in a public venue such as a conference, Apeiron or the WTE Day of Transformation. Students must contact the professor at least one semester prior to enrolling in the course and write a proposal approved by that faculty member and the Center Director prior to enrollimg in the course. Students should plan ahead for this option as affiliated faculty and the Center Director will only accept carefully crafted proposals that correspond with their interests and availability and meet the intent of the minor.