Community Health

Farm Ed for Youth: Growing Stories
This Capstone will partner with the Sauvie Island Center (sauvieislandcenter.org). The mission of the Sauvie Island Center is “educating youth about food, farming, and the land.”  Students will work collaboratively with the Sauvie Island Center staff to develop curriculum for school age children, help the Center to tell the story of Oregon farmers and of farm education, and support Center staff in developing and maintaining the organization’s field trip site at Topaz Farm on Sauvie Island. Students will have the option of volunteering remotely or on site at Topaz Farm, learning about sustainable food systems and the impact of farm education; the course will offer opportunities for students to develop skills in educating and storytelling to help transform the relationship between humans and their environment and thus enact social change.

This Capstone will partner with the Learning Gardens Laboratory (LGL), a 12-acre garden education site on Portland’s southeast side. Students work collaboratively to gather stories of community gardeners, teachers, and community partners who regularly gather at LGL to learn and farm. Capstone students will gain skills in interviewing, storytelling, and using narrative as a means for social change, in addition to learning about sustainable food systems and the impact of learning gardens. 

Meditation and Service

Meditation and mindful awareness encompass a philosophy of living with a quiet mind, open heart, and in service to others; they are our primary practices in this capstone. We will explore mindful awareness and meditation as foundations for personal, community, and global health and well being. Our meditative practices, ancient Eastern philosophy, racial equity, and social responsibility will inform how we engage in service learning. By serving with non-profit community partners we will practice empathy and compassion while deepening our understanding of housing and houselessness and their intimate connection to health and well-being.

Sustainable Food Systems and Educational Farms at Learning Garden's Lab Site

The time is ripe to be part of the growing sustainable food movement! This class addresses the current food issues that face urban citizens by holistically engaging students in the many layers of Portland's local food and farm culture.  Students will critically analyze the state of our current food systems while being engaged in positive solutions to agricultural-related issues. The community partner and classroom is the Learning Gardens Lab, where students will gain hands-on farming experience, experientially explore their personal connection to food and the land, participate in the Learning Garden programs, and positively contribute to food security in our greater community.

Image result for contrary to media we are not all meant to look the sameEvery Body Matters – Embracing Size Diversity

 This course focuses on fatness as a social and cultural construction, examining the relationship between discrimination caused by body size and gender, race, and social class. Students will use social justice and healthcare perspectives to question weight bias and explore ways in which the fat community and its supporters resist sizeism. This course offers an alternative view of fatness that accepts the reality of a diversity of body shapes, sizes, and types and works to reduce harmful bias and fat phobia that negatively impacts all people, fat and thin. Standardized weights and "ideal" body types can be oppressive to everyone, even those that fit the "norm."

 

This multidisciplinary Capstone is carried over two terms (Spring and Summer). The Spring term portion involves pre-travel projects in preparation for the service-learning trip and classroom learning experience. The Summer term portion is a two-week service-learning experience in Nicaragua (tentative travel dates: June 15/16 - June 29, 2015). Students and faculty will focus on service-learning activities in the areas of public health and community development related to aging and older adults in Nicaragua.

This course will partner with Portland’s Community Cycling Center, helping them increase their capacity by developing grants for specific projects. The Community Cycling Center works to broaden access to bicycling and the benefits of cycling. Their vision is to build a vibrant community where people of all backgrounds use bicycles to stay healthy and connected. In order to write a successful grant proposal, one must gather up as much knowledge about the topic and the organization as possible.

Rose Haven serves women and children experiencing the trauma of abuse, loss of home and other disruptive life challenges. Rose Haven's mission is to maintain a safe, respectful community while providing guests with support and services to assist them in regaining stability in their lives. THis capstone egages students in scholarship about food cultures and scoial justice, responding and partnering with Rose Haven to support their work. 

Adelante Mujeres, a non-profit based in Forest Grove, is commited to the education and empowerment of Latina women immigrants.  Students will work with staff to prepare Latina women for public advocacy.  Students and the women will organize public presentations, including with state legislators.  Some travel to Forest Grove and Salem is involved.

This course is taught on the model of the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program, which brings together college students living in prison (in this case, Coffee Creek Women’s Correctional Facility) with students on the outside. In this unique classroom environment we will focus on the question, “What Is Justice?” The premise of the course is that living a just existence means living imaginatively. “Justice” is not a thing, but an abstract ideal that we must constantly re-envision as we attempt to put it into practice.

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