Values and Framework
Though Community-Engaged Teaching and Research are found in many educational environments, they are unique at Duquesne because of the values we hold.
Duquesne’s community engagement efforts are driven by the values and practices informed by our institutional mission and charism of our founders, the Congregation of the Holy Spirit:
- Collaboration - We do not do for anyone what we can do with them.
- Relationships - We strive to develop sustainable relationships in communities; we do not drop in for one-shot experiences.
- Responsible Action - By working with community partners we align our efforts with the community's agenda and resources rather than insert our own.
- Systemic Change - We try to address the root cause of community challenges. In those instances where direct service is provided, we educate ourselves and our students about the systemic issues that create a need for our service.
The framework for community-based experiences reflect these values. By developing relevant and sustainable partnerships, students and faculty help to build stronger communities and enrich the lives of Pittsburgh residents in some of the following ways:
- Community Capacity Building - Collaborate with non-profit organizations to develop strategic plans, diversity audits, marketing campaigns, and to construct community asset inventories.
- Advocacy Through Education - Interview stakeholders to create a public log of their experiences regarding a public issue debate; Design a training program for EMS on the rights and needs of homeless individuals; Spread awareness of free income tax preparation and financial education services.
- Policy and Community Research - Identify land use and invasive species patterns through the region's green spaces; Analyze health services for correlation with healthcare legislation; Develop a survey instrument to determine recidivism rates among previously homeless women who participated in a peer mentoring program.
- Training, Education, and Workforce Development - Assist English language instruction with recently resettled refugee families; Develop life skills training programs for homeless military veterans; Teach basic computer skills classes; Share classes with incarcerated men and women; Hold seminars for senior citizens.
- Access to Arts and Strengthened Community Identity - Hold musical performances in community venues; Create an outreach network of youth interested in African American Arts and Culture; Assemble oral histories of residents' experiences in Hazelwood, the Hill District, and South Pittsburgh.