John Carroll University - Innovation in Community Engagement in response to the pandemic (GivePulse Showcase & Impact Awards)
When the pandemic began last year, we immediately had to cease about 100 weekly service-learning activities in the greater Cleveland area. We couldn't translate these activities into a virtual environment right away, as the situation was rapidly changing both within our campus community and with our community partners. We focused our energy on supporting our student workers and creating a virtual platform for community engagement, cssaengagecle.org. Through this platform, students and community members could access educational and advocacy resources to continue to make a difference and work with our partners throughout the past year. Our community engagement model centers the voices, assets, and needs of our community partners throughout Cleveland. The last thing we wanted to do during the pandemic was ask too much of our partners to accommodate our normal volume of service activities in a virtual format. Instead, CSSA created our own virtual workshop series, Lobo Labs. Starting in Fall 2020, we ran nine weekly Lobo Labs on different themes, ranging from Elementary Math Tutoring, to Arts & Crafts, to Virtual Field Trips. The Labs were open to anyone, free of charge.