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Community Engaged Learning Designation

University of Utah faculty may apply to have their courses designated as community-engaged learning (CEL) in the schedule of classes.

Identifying courses in this way is beneficial for you and your students. Among other things, the CEL designation:

  • helps students see that they are enrolling in a CEL course when they register;
  • introduces students to the idea of community-engaged learning before they attend class on the first day;
  • brings greater visibility to the practice of community-engaged learning at the University of Utah;
  • allows us to track these courses and identify the faculty and students who engage in this meaningful practice;
  • enables the Bennion Center to document the benefits of this pedagogy to students, the community, and faculty, and report those benefits to administrators, community partners, donors, and others.

President Pershing's office provides additional funding, based on enrollment in CEL classes, to support and enhance community-engaged learning courses and faculty. Funds are transferred to programs and departments after OBIA completes its calculations. The additional funding must be reinvested in your community-engaged learning program. Some of the legitimate uses include:

  • Paying an honorarium to a community partner for working with a CEL class or group of students;
  • Paying the parking for a community partner who comes to campus to talk with a CEL class;
  • Paying background checks for students (it is now a requirement if students in CEL classes are working with children under the age of 18);
  • Paying for a semester-end party/open house, which could entail CEL presentations by students to community partners;
  • Reimbursing a faculty member who teaches CEL courses for associated expenses (e.g., mileage, if the individual has regular meetings with community partners; meals, if the individual has a lunch meeting with a community partner; supplies, if the individual needs to purchase software or books).

Applications and syllabi are reviewed by the Community Engaged Learning Course Designation Committee. Materials must be submitted online by the following dates for consideration: March 15 for Fall classes, October 15 for Spring classes, and February 15 for Summer classes.

Please note: The University of Utah has adopted a Safety of Minors Policy (1-015) to help ensure that all minors who participate in University programs have a safe and meaningful educational experience. This policy also applies to all community-engaged learning courses that have interactions with children under the age of 18. Read the details about the required steps

Questions? Contact Andi Witczak, Associate Director of Community Engaged Learning.
Last Updated: 7/6/18