The PSU Capstone program has a long history of partnering with other learning institutions. Within “Education” themed Capstones, students have worked to support students (PK-12) in partnerships with groups like the Native American Youth and Family Center (NAYA) where students serve as mentors and tutors, Barnes School (Beaverton School District) where students support classroom teachers in the bilingual immersion program, and King School (Portland Public School District) where students facilitate small group work in math and reading.
Our work with education-focused partners is rooted in our dedication to giving back what outstanding mentors and teachers have given to us and to addressing issues of educational equity. In a submission to the Capstone’s 2009-2010 portfolio review process, one student noted a substantial gain in understanding the roots of the issues related to education in her Capstone noting that “At the start of the course…. I lacked the knowledge to understand the type of barriers that exist for students who are hindered by things out of their control.” Coming to understand the roots of educational inequities and barriers for students is an important step in participating in more long-term support for our schools and education programs. Education Capstones become part of this larger movement of support in a vital way, and Capstone students take their knowledge with them into classrooms, businesses, and neighborhoods across the country.