We are still hiring for Civic Engagement Scholars (CES) for the Swim for Success and K Votes programs for 2022-2023! If you are a student passionate about community-based change and civic engagement, we want to hear from you. CESs are student leaders for their peers and with a community partner in Kalamazoo. In Swim for Success, K Students provide swimming lessons and homework tutoring to KPS students and K Votes focuses on spreading election information, registering people to vote, and encouraging political engagement in a variety of ways. If either of these programs sound interesting to you, check out the application on our website and Handshake!https://cce.kzoo.edu/opportunities/slp/
Community Building Internships (CBIs) close this Friday, March 18th! Apply now on Handshake to submit your application! You can visit our website to learn more about the CBI program. Interns get a $4,000 stipend! https://cce.kzoo.edu/opportunities/community-building-internships/
Kalamazoo college is being recognized by ALL IN Democracy Challenge and Civic Nation with a “platinum seal” in voter turnout for the 2020 election, with a 93.4% voter registration rate and 83.7% voter turnout rate among students. We are proud of the incredible work that made this possible organized by K Votes student Civic Engagement Scholars (CES) and then-Assistant Director of the CCE, Emily Kowey (K 17).
K Votes, a non-partisan student-led program of the Center for Civic Engagement, is focused on educating and spreading awareness about voting and elections on K’s campus. One of the student CESs, Mahum Khan (K 24), who is also a Campus Vote Project democracy fellow, says, “Our main goal this past election was to institutionalize voting and voting engagement on our campus, and I think the 2020 NSLVE data provides a good representation of our ability to reach that goal in the efforts we made.” K Votes worked in partnership with their student peers, the local League of Women Voters, and the national organization, Rock the Vote, whose Executive Director is Caroline DeWitt (K 04).
K Votes CES Kaitlyn Dexter says, “It was hard being off campus, but we made virtual connections across campus to get the word out. Some of those collaborations were with the Campus Vote Project, PIRGIM, and the College’s office of Outdoor Programs.” Khan added, “These collaborations allowed students to bike to the polls, learn about voter registration and how to vote, and overall increased the College’s turnout.”
Although, K’s 2020 registration and voting rates considerably exceed the national average for students in college and university, the rate of student voting participation is higher at K for white students than for BIPOC students—and this is a gap we need to address. It is through continued collaborations and awareness work that we are able to educate globally active citizens.
The CCE will host a Homecoming and Reunion event from 2-4pm on Saturday, October 16th. Alumni, please register through the Homecoming webpage and all others interested should email Teresa Denton at Teresa.Denton@kzoo.edu. Leading up to our 20th Anniversary Celebration, we will be sharing videos of K alumni reflecting on their experiences working with the community through CCE partnerships on our Facebook Page.
The CCE is thrilled to announce that El Concilio has honored us with their 2021 Guerreros Award in recognition of an organization that has continuously volunteered with El Concilio and has donated hundreds of hours to supporting the Kalamazoo Latinx community. Moises Hernandez, Assistant Director of the CCE, accepted the award from Adrian Vazquez and Emma Robbin at El Concilio’s 40th anniversary Nuestras Raices Gala on September 18, 2021, which all CCE staff attended. El Concilio envisions a thriving Latinx community, equipped to preserve distinct cultural identities within the broader community, and they enable and promote the prosperity of the Latinx community by providing a variety of services, programs, and cultural events. The CCE works with El Concilio in our Community Based Internship program.
Beginning in 2017, students in Dr. Karyn Boatwright’s Feminist Psychology of Women course have partnered with Planned Parenthood of Southwest Michigan (PPSWM) to gather and share stories about the importance of access to reproductive health services for all people. Based on qualitative interviews they have conducted with clients, staff, and supporters of PPSWMI, students have written, directed, and produced a moving devised theatre piece, “Pro-Voice Monologues: Stories of Reproductive Justice,” presented on K’s campus before a live audience, and followed by an interactive panel discussion with local leaders. The sold out public performances, usually held on two consecutive nights, have served as fundraisers for Planned Parenthood Advocates of Michigan and they raise awareness of both the importance and the precarity of the critical health services Planned Parenthood provides.
Undaunted by the challenges a pandemic year posed, in May 2021 students in Professor Boatwright’s Spring 2021 developed and performed a live Zoom production of dramatic readings that drew on previously collected stories. These were followed by a lively online discussion featuring local leaders and advocates for health and health care.
The CCE provides financial support to Dr. Boatwright’s course, and partners with PPSMI in many ways, including through our ongoing program, Students for Reproductive Freedom , led by CES Ruth Butters.
A Kalamazoo College student working in a CCE Program or Community Building Internship is covered by the College’s nondiscrimination/antiharassment policies outlined below.
Kalamazoo College Nondiscrimination Policy
An equal opportunity employer, Kalamazoo College is committed to equal rights, equal opportunities, and equal protection under the law. The College administers its programs, activities, and services without regard to race, color, religion, age, sex, national origin, height, weight, marital status, familial status, physical disability as protected by law, or sexual orientation. The College’s definition of sexual orientation proscribes discrimination based on a person’s sexuality, or gender identity, actual or presume https://www.kzoo.edu/about/nondiscrimination-policy/
Policy Against Harassment
This policy establishes the College’s commitment to the health, safety, and well-being of all Kalamazoo College students and employees. The College has a legal obligation to ensure a working and learning environment free from all forms of sexual assault and harassment. The College does not discriminate nor tolerate discrimination in any form, in any education program or activity of the College, and will investigate complaints and take prompt and effective steps reasonably calculated to end the behavior, avoid its repetition, and prevent future harassment. https://titleix.kzoo.edu/handbook/policy-against-harassment/
Reporting Incidents of Discrimination and/or Harassment
The Community Building Interns, CESs and Participants have been instructed to report to CCE staff and their supervisor if they feel they have experienced any form of discrimination and/or harassment while working at their site. The CCE staff will work with the student and supervisor to address the situation/incident. If all parties do not feel it has been satisfactorily addressed, the CCE staff will refer the claim to Kalamazoo College Human Resources. The exception to this reporting process is for claims of sexual harassment or assault. The CCE is required by law to immediately report these claims to the College’s Human Resource Department.
For more information, please visit the Community and Global Health website.
It is with heavy hearts, that The Center for Civic Engagement shares the news of the passing of Mrs. Dorothy Young on November 28, 2020.
We had the honor of working with Mrs. Young for almost two decades through our partnership with Community Advocates for Parents and Students (CAPS). As a founding board member for CAPS, Mrs. Young shared her time and talents with the children and their families living at Interfaith Homes as well as the hundreds of Kalamazoo College students who tutored in the CAPS program. When the Kalamazoo Promise was announced, the CCE was deluged with requests for K students to be tutors in new educational initiatives. While all of them had promising missions and dedicated leaders only CAPS had Mrs. Young as a leader, making it the obvious choice. Her reputation for putting children’s needs before politics or adult egos was well known and her common-sense approach for getting things done made us honored to be invited to be a part of this group. She not only built relationships with the many families who were a part of the CAPS community, but also with the K College students she mentored throughout the years. For many of them, she was one of the most influential people on their college education. The Kalamazoo community will not be the same without Mrs. Young but her legacy lives on through the many programs she led and the youth she inspired to work for change.
We will miss Mrs. Young, the community activist and fierce advocate for youth, but even more, we will miss Dorothy, our dear friend. We extend our sincere condolences to her family and friends.
Nominated by CCE Associate Director, Teresa Denton, Mrs. Young was awarded the Governor’s Senior Volunteer award by Governor Jennifer Granholm in 2010. To learn more about Mrs. Young’s impact on the Kalamazoo community, follow link to this story.