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Building Partnerships for Service Learning

On behalf of the Mount St. Joseph University, we would like to thank you for entering into a partnership with us to provide richer educational opportunities for our students. By accepting and supervising our student volunteers, you are helping them to actively combine classroom theory with real-life experience. Ultimately you are also contributing to the University's mission of service to others.

If you are interested in becoming a community partner, please contact the Manager of Service Learning & Civic Engagement, Keith Lanser at 513-244-4634 or via email at In order to become a community partner, your organization will need to complete and turn in our agency agreement form and our community partner sheet to the Service Learning Office (see below). 
Agency Agreement Form (.doc, 122K)

This form is required for all community partners. 

Community Partner Sheet (.docx, 12K)

This is the document that we use to promote service learning opportunities to students. 

Adobe Acrobat Reader is required to view and print PDF files.

The community agencies selected as sites for the service learning experiences provide community building opportunities consistent with the goals of the Mount’s service learning program. The Mount selects a limited number of agencies and organizations in order to maintain enduring commitments to those organizations and neighborhoods.

What is meaningful community service? Meaningful community service is the engagement of students in activities that primarily focus on the service being provided as well as the benefits their service activities have on the recipients. The students benefit by learning more about how their service makes a difference in the lives of the service recipients. 

Questions to ask yourself when choosing a service site

What am I doing this for?
To gain practical work experience for your resume?  To apply knowledge you have learned in the classroom?  To actively work on a serious social issue that is important to you?

Where do I prefer to work? And with whom?
Do you prefer to work with children? Adolescents? Adults? Senior citizens? In what type of setting would you prefer to work?  What setting would be the most challenging for you? 

Could I really work in any type of environment?
What type of supervision works best for you?  How much structure do you need in a position?  Do you prefer set work responsibilities, or are you comfortable not knowing what to expect? 

Questions to Ask Community Agencies

About the Agency
What are the mission and goals of the organization? Who does the agency serve? Have any Mount students volunteered there before?

About Volunteering
What type of service does the agency need? Are there specific skills or qualities the agency is looking for in its volunteers? What type of orientations and ongoing training do volunteers receive? 

About Your Involvement
Must volunteers agree to a minimum time commitment? How many hours per week are needed? Is public transportation available to the site? Is there parking?

Hints for Planning a Service experience

  • Call the agency between 9am-5pm and ask for the volunteer coordinator 
  • Identify yourself as a Mount St. Joseph University Service Learning Student 
  • Set up an appointment to discuss your interest in volunteering 
  • Describe the type of volunteer experience you are looking for 
  • Know your learning objectives and make sure they’ll be met
  • Get brochures and materials from the agency