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U-Michigan students to roll up sleeves in community service

ANN ARBOR—University of Michigan students led by faculty and staff will reach out this fall to community organizations for one-day service opportunities, and for semester-long projects tied to courses.

Many university classes and groups are involved with the area community and beyond. The following is a sampling.

One-day events

Campus Farm and the School of Natural Resources and Environment: From 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Aug 26, incoming students from SNRE will harvest vegetables at the U-M Campus Farm, located at the Matthaei Botanical Gardens, 1800 N. Dixboro Road. At 3 p.m., organizers hope to hand over 500 pounds of fresh produce to the Ann Arbor Food Gatherers (foodgatherers.org). Contact Parker Anderson, Campus Farm Manager, (805) 451-6300, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

School of Social Work: For the seventh year, students from the School of Social Work will fan out into locations in Detroit and Ypsilanti, from 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m., Aug. 27, to help Hannan Foundation's Village of Woodbridge Manor, The James and Grace Lee Boggs School, Boulevard House and Gleaners Community Food Bank, Guidance Center: Kids-TALK Children's Advocacy Center and Dawn Farm. Contact: Lisa Raycraft, (734) 763-9534, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

School of Public Health: During orientation on Aug. 28, students will participate in a Practice Plunge program designed to introduce students to the field of public health. Students have community organizations to choose from in different Michigan counties. Following a morning briefing and discussion on the county's demographics, health indicators, and community context at the local health departments, students will work at one of six community organizations: Baldwin Center (Oakland), Food Gatherers (Washtenaw), Food Bank of Eastern Michigan (Genessee), Gleaners (Wayne), Focus Hope (Detroit) or Hope Community Center (Lenawee). Contact: Terri Mellow (734) 764-8094, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Courses engaged with the community

The Community Stories Project: This new course--the first of four in a series funded by the Third Century Initiative--will focus on teaching students to create innovative and transformative local history projects with communities. This fall students will work with the Chicana por mi Raza project to document the contribution of Latinas in Michigan to the development of feminist and Latina/o political and theoretical discourse. Students will have produced eight oral histories by semesters' end. Contact Vivianne Schnitzer, (734) 276-9027, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Eng 100--Engineers Making a Difference: This introductory course is built around community service and students work to design a system or device that meets a client's needs. This year the class will be involved with Growing Hope in Ypsilanti, developing user-centered designs for growing food in small spaces for specific users, including those who are wheel-chair bound and live in apartments. Students will work with Detroit Community High School in Brightmoor to design vertical growing surfaces for their developing market garden. They also will work with Focus: Hope in Detroit, and learn about sustainable food systems by spending time at the Campus Farm. See last year's course focus at http://worldclass.umich.edu/#engineers. Contact: Nicole Casal Moore, (734) 647-7087, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Business Strategies for the Base of the Pyramid: Students in this Ross School Course identify a non-profit or for-profit business that seeks to address a societal problem. Then they put their business skills to work to support the organization with needs like fundraising, volunteer recruitment and raising awareness. See what last year's group worked on at http://worldclass.umich.edu/#beyond-business-social-entrepreneurship. Contact Bernie DeGroat, (734) 647-1947, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.