Spring 2020

Active: 
yes

Dismantling Inequities Through Violence Prevention

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. 

Trauma often leads to contemplative dissociation- a detachment from the body and the mind. Through a social justice framework, together we will explore trauma and healing using Interpersonal Neurobiology (IPNB).  IPNB is relational neuroscience that offers kinder, broader wisdom to understand how we are hurt and how we heal within relationships (including the relationship with the self).

Anti-Bias K12 Education (online)

The Black Lives Matter at School week of action and call to anti-racist curriculum year round was initiated by Seattle educators in 2016 in response to bomb threats by white supremacists toward students and teachers wearing Black Lives Matter/We Stand Together t-shirts at John Muir Elementary School.  Inequity in curriculum, curricular violence, bias in textbooks, lack of access to diverse authors and representation in school libraries all contribute to the “achievement gaps” that both federal and state education departments often focus on in their initiatives and data tracking.

Senior Capstone Students visting the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona,Spain One of the most powerful learning opportunities for a student is studying abroad.  The impactful, sensory experience of being far away ultimately brings us closer to ourselves, naturally offering a platform to examine how we identify and relate to the world around us. 

Curriculum and Material Development for Heritage/Indigenous Language (INDIGENOUS LANG ACTIVISM) 

The goal of this course is to give students a solid background in historical and societal issues that influence language diversity through hands-on collaboration with current language sustainability efforts. This capstone partners with endangered language communities in the Northwest (tribal language programs in general and the Warm Springs Tribal Language Program, specifically) to work together to support those programs by giving students “on-the-ground” skills to accompany class studies. Capstone students will develop language and/or pedagogical materials that will support the endangered language programs/teachers in their work to offer language classes in their communities. General class instruction will be exclusively online or hybrid and those students who can meet at the PSU campus may be able to participate in a visit to the language communities to increase students’ practical understanding of the language and community issues for their final work. All students who are interested in Indigenous and/or language activism are welcome to this capstone (regardless of any prior familiarity with Indigenous languages or history), and especially those who are interested in supporting our community partner’s fund-raising efforts and curriculum/teaching activities.  Students in this capstone are strongly encouraged, as a class goal, to foster a healthy online community and collaborate with peers through group work. Members from our community partner and other guest speakers will also join online (likely using Zoom), and other online meeting times will be determined by class and community participants’ availability and schedule.

Higher Education in Prison

Drawing on poetry, political theory, sociological texts, film, and personal narratives, this course offers an introduction to prison and its critiques, as well as the power of education to transform individuals and societies. This hybrid course meets once a week at Coffee Creek Correctional Facility (CCCF); Capstone students will study together with women enrolled in higher education at the women’s prison, about 20 minutes south of PSU in Wilsonville. Successful background clearances are required in order to participate.

Racial Justice & Voice: Black Civil Rights

This course combines critical race theory, the history of the Black Civil Rights Movement, and critical service-learning methodology to develop a symposium plan for Campus Compact of Oregon's annual programming honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. PSU Students will design a teach-in style event that centers the voices and needs of partner campus representatives, community interest groups and advocates, and student activists representing Portland's Black community; thematically this project seeks to connect the historical to the contemporary, and the regional to the national, to develop a new vision of Campus Compact's MLK Day programming.

Mentored Storytelling - Swinehart:  This Capstone partners with two schools in Oregon - Walt Morey Middle School in the Reynolds School District and Wilson River School in Tillamook, Oregon. PSU students will provide creative mentoring to students to help them express themselves through storytelling. The course will examine issues of social justice; power and privilege in our society, community and classrooms; holistic learning; the power of empathy and being vulnerable in a leadership role; and what creates self-advocacy. PSU students will critically engage with relational pedagogical practices including story exchanges, interviews and personal narratives.

In this course, students have the opportunity to learn the basics of grant writing. A much sought-after skill in many sectors, grant writing helps a variety of nonprofits and government agencies obtain funds for various projects they are interested in pursuing. For this class, our community partner will be JOIN. As they describe on their website, JOIN exists to support the efforts of homeless individuals and families to transition out of homelessness into permanent housing.

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