Fall 2023

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Creating Global Citizens

Global citizenship is of utmost importance as our societies are increasingly becoming more connected through media and technology. There is a growing disparity in the American school system that allows only the privileged students to participate in meaningful and engaging cultural learning. Schools that receive funding and support are able to facilitate cultural exchanges in person for students and faculty, while the majority of students in the public system receive little financial support and are left without any type of cultural exchange or enrichment program. This capstone will provide this needed and valuable cultural exchange.

Artwork featuring fat people of various races wearing diverse style of clothing, holding hands

Leadership and Mentoring 

The mentoring of young people takes many forms. Some young people grow up with a sibling, relative or another adult ally who serves as a mentor to them. Some benefit from formal mentoring programs in schools or from community organizations. Not everyone enjoys access to regular mentoring, yet research shows that mentoring has tremendous benefits for both the mentor and the mentee. These benefits include the development of leadership skills, increased interpersonal communication, improved relationship-building skills, and increased self-awareness. Armed with these skills, a young person has greater potential for success in many settings.

This hybrid online course is for students who are interested in creating and facilitating a community event. This Capstone partners with Portland Parks & Recreation Adaptive Inclusion Program. Each term, students will plan and facilitate a community event that has already been arranged with the community partner prior to the start of each term. You can expect the in person event to be during the last 2 weeks of the term (event date and time will be announced in the first week of classes, and is a requirement of this course). Students will be challenged to develop skills in: event planning, speaking, listening, building community relationships, and affecting social change. This course will not be addressing fundraising or grant writing as part of event planning. 

Grantwriting for Environmental Defense

Environmentalism is a philosophy and social movement (come call it a revolution) involving both protection and improvement of the health of our natural environment. Environmentalism is an attempt to achieve sustainability so that both humans and the Earth thrive without compromising future generations. The movement in this country is credited as starting with Rachel Carson and her extremely popular book Silent Spring published in 1962, when it fact it was spawned in 1945 with the return of soldiers from World War II and the creation of suburbs that caused issues with sewage, storm water runoff, nonpoint source pollution, and inefficient energy sources.

Nationally, approximately 1 in 6 children live in food insecure households. Recent reporting suggests that food insecurity rates for households with children have tripled since the onset of the pandemic.

Social Justice In K-12 ED Capstone

Since the implementation of the No Child Left Behind Act in 2001, the “achievement gap” has been at the forefront of discussions about school equity.  The public has been tuned into this so-called “achievement gap” alongside shocking high school dropout rates, lack of access to equitable early childhood education, public disinvestment in the education system, disparities in access to higher education, and more.   According to the Children’s Defense Fund’s 2012 State of America’s Children Report, the gaps (more accurately and truthfully described as opportunity, wealth, or access gaps) between high and low income students is 30-40% greater now than a generation ago.  This same report details that a lack of access to early childhood education can lead to 25% of at-risk youth dropping out and 60% never accessing higher education.  This study goes on to state that while 76% of high school students graduate within four years, only 2/3 of black and Latino students graduate within this same time frame (Children’s Defense Fund). 

Older Americans have been witness to great social and political changes in the lives and acceptance of LGBT people in American society. As the Stonewall generation of boomers near their later life, is estimated that as many as 7 million older adults will identify as LGBT by 2030. These seniors face unique challenges in accessing the care and rights that enable them to age with dignity and stability. For many LGBT seniors, recent research has marked a disconcerting trend of going "back into the closet" for fear of intolerance and survival in senior housing, assistance and care facilities.

Sustainable Living

In light of looming environmental crises, what can individuals do to change direction? In this course we collectively examine our society to determine which cultural and personal values support, and which inhibit, sustainability.

Grant Writing for Animals: Shelter Pets

Approximately  2.7 million healthy, adoptable cats and dogs - about one every 11  seconds - are euthanized in U.S. shelters each year. This class partners with a local no-kill animal shelter to further its goals of eliminating the unnecessary euthanasia of healthy or treatable companion animals in the community and finding them permanent, loving homes. 

Students will participate in the various aspects of grantwriting, including locating appropriate funders and ascertaining the needs of the community partner, as well as writing and reviewing grant proposals.  A significant portion of this course is spent in online discussions, allowing students to explore the social/cultural dynamics of pet overpopulation, the ethical dilemmas presented by it, and the rise of the no-kill revolution in the United States. Please have a webcam or smartphone available for the discussions. 

The end project will be a presentation and portfolio of grant proposals addressing the current needs of the community partner. Please contact Kimberly Mukobi, kmukobi@pdx.edu, for more information.

 

 

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