Prior to graduating from universities, most undergraduate students participate in at least one community service activity. Although beneficial effects of community service activity on students’ cognitive and prosocial behavior development have been assumed, the activities and processes of implementing service-learning programs in higher education tend to be unsystematic and vary widely. This reflective summary describes a process to redevelop the traditional community service activity, named “Make a Difference Day” (MDD), at Purdue University by implementing the selective theme and its effects. The selected theme “homelessness” enabled administrators to implement background theory, select appropriate community partners, and develop reasonable learning outcomes and assessments. The postsurvey results showed three learning outcomes were fairly reflected on participants’ responses: increased awareness and understanding of the homeless, enhanced understanding of roles of community partners, and developed future plans to apply lessons from the MDD. Lack of integration of academic classes remained for the future development.
"Theme-Based “Make a Difference Day” and Its Impacts: Did the “Make a Difference Day” Make Actual Differences?,"
Purdue Journal of Service-Learning and International Engagement: Vol. 1
Available at: https://docs.lib.purdue.edu/pjsl/vol1/iss1/3