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Changemaker Faculty Fellows: Community Engaged Learning



The Changemaker Faculty Fellows Program is a faculty development program and formal learning community that provides an opportunity for selected faculty members to integrate community engaged learning (CEL) into their teaching, research, and public service while being recognized as campus leaders in CEL pedagogy. The program is a partnership between the Teaching + Learning Commons' Engaged Teaching and Experiential Learning Hubs and the Center for Student Involvement. Up to eight (8) Changemaker Faculty Fellows will be selected for the 2021-2023 cohort through a competitive review process and will each be awarded a $10,000 faculty development award. Fellowship applications for Fall 2021 – Spring 2023 are due July 21, 2021

2021-2023 Application

Apply for the Changemaker Faculty Fellowship in Community Engaged Learning by July 28, 2021.

Go to form

Program Rationale

An orientation toward service is a core tenet of UC San Diego’s mission as a public research university committed to “supporting and promoting just and sustainable forms of economic development, shared prosperity, and social and cultural enrichment regionally and globally” (UC San Diego Strategic Plan, 2014). This is why the campus has been recognized as a Changemaker Campus by Ashoka U as a leader in social innovation and changemaking. UC San Diego is one of only 45 universities around the world to receive the prestigious designation from Ashoka, the world's largest network of social innovators (UC San Diego).

As part of our effort to equip our students to become the next generation of global leaders and channel their passions to spark social impact in a wide range of disciplines, the Changemaker Faculty Fellows program aims to support faculty who are doing the work through CEL. 

What is Community Engaged Learning?

There are many definitions for Community Engaged Learning and Service Learning from which it stems. At UC San Diego, we utilize the following definitions:

Community engaged learning “serves as a vehicle for connecting students and institutions to their communities and the larger social good, while at the same time instilling in students the values of community and social responsibility” (Neururer & Rhoads, 1998, p. 321).

Service-learning is a form of experiential education in which students engage in activities that address human and community needs together with structured opportunities for reflection designed to promote student learning and development (Jacoby, 1996).

Community Engaged Learning is a powerful pedagogy that promotes community-based learning and problem solving, and has shown positive effects on numerous learning outcomes, including, but not limited to, critical thinking, cultural awareness, moral development, and increasing students’ sense of civic responsibility (Eyler, Giles, Stenson, & Gray, 2001). 

In alignment with UC San Diego’s core tenets for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, the Changemaker Community Engaged Learning Faculty Fellows program uses a social justice framework and anti-racist lens. We approach our work with the recognition of the many harms that have been perpetuated by charity models of service learning; therefore, in this program, community partners are recognized and valued as co-educators and co-collaborators who have an invested commitment to engage with educators and students in a way that is reciprocal and mutually benefitting (Kahne & Westheimer, 1994; Marullo & Edwards, 2000; Ward & Wolf-Wendel, 2000). Recognizing the history and legacy of settler colonialism and the need to approach Changemaking work from a decolonial perspective, the program centers efforts and leadership of BIPOC researchers, educators, students, and communities and commits to standards that advance racial equity (Curry-Stevens, Reyes, & Coalition of Communities of Color, 2014; Heidebrecht & Balzer, 2020; Hernandez, 2017).

Program Goals

Goals of the Fellowship are twofold: 

(1) Develop a faculty learning community to support teaching innovation, networking, and leadership toward strengthening and expanding UC San Diego’s community engaged learning efforts. 

(2) Provide funding support for faculty who are interested in developing courses that focus on community engaged learning.

To this end, the Changemaker Faculty Fellows program is committed to supporting participants in the following endeavors: 

  • Becoming part of a core group of campus leaders and advocates who are knowledgeable about and engaged in CEL pedagogy and committed to community engagement that values community partners as co-educators;
  • Increasing familiarity and exposure to CEL theory and current research; 
  • Exploring evaluation and assessment strategies for measuring CEL’s impact on students, faculty, and community members; 
  • Developing and implementing a CEL related project that merges community engagement with academic coursework;
  • Connecting to public service and outreach initiatives and existing community-university partnerships; 
  • Developing interdisciplinary CEL projects through conversation and collaboration with faculty from other disciplines; and
  • Enhancing the CEL resources to support faculty on this high-impact practice.

Eligibility & Program Criteria

The program is open to full-time UC San Diego Senate faculty members with an interest in CEL or teams, including at least one full-time UC San Diego faculty member. Experience in service-learning pedagogy or familiarity with service-learning or civic engagement research is preferred, but not required. We encourage applications that consider Changemaking in remote and hybrid contexts. 

Course/projects (proposed or existing) criteria:

  • At least one identified community partner (may include additional campus partners)
  • Engages community partner(s) as co-educator

Applicants who are new to CEL are expected to have potential community partners in mind prior to applying. If you would like support with identifying a community partner, we invite you to reach out to Cat Lettieri

Team applications: We welcome interdisciplinary team proposals. A team may apply with up to three co-applicants. To receive the full $10,000 stipend, all co-applicants are expected to fully engage and attend learning community meetings and activities. Additional collaborators are welcome but may not be listed as fellows. The application review committee includes members of the planning and facilitation team and former faculty fellows. The review criteria includes: depth of student engagement, plans for community engagement, potential for long-term impact, and potential contribution to the learning community.

Fellowship Award

A $10,000 fellowship award will be provided to an individual or team for discretionary use for activities such as professional development, course development, research, and implementation costs that could include curriculum materials, shared materials or stipends for community partners, course or project-related travel, and/or undergraduate or graduate student CEL course-related support. 

Applicants are asked to provide a budget for how they plan to use the funds. Once transferred, funds will be administered by the faculty member’s departmental fiscal contact.

Link to an Example Budget 

$7,500 will be transferred to the faculty awardees’ department the first year and $2,500 will be transferred the second year. Fellows will work with their department’s financial contact re: disbursement of funds. 

If you would like to consult with us in the budget creation process, please email 

Program Management

To promote integrative and lifelong learning for students and faculty at UC San Diego, the Changemaker Faculty Fellows Program is led and managed by the Teaching + Learning Commons' Engaged Teaching and Experiential Learning Hubs and the Center for Student Involvement.

Program Requirements

Commitment to full participation in the program activities is required for consideration as a Changemaker Faculty Fellow In Community Engaged Learning. CFF-CEL is a two-year program with the first year focused on a rigorous core curriculum and the second year focused on mentorship and engagement:

The CFF is a two-year program with the first year focused on a rigorous core curriculum and the second year focused on mentorship and engagement:

Applicants must commit to the following activities to be considered for selection: 

  1. Community Engaged Learning Project
    • Enhance a current course project or develop a new CEL-oriented course throughout the fellowship period. See below for project guidelines. 
    • Submit a progress report.
    • Present project at campus CEL showcase or conference at end of year one.
  2. CFF Learning Community Engagement (Year 1)
    • Retreat: Participate in a daylong retreat or two half days, depending on schedules, held in September at the start of the Fall 2021 quarter. The retreat sets the groundwork for the CFF Learning Community and provides an introduction to CFF program goals; critical community engaged learning pedagogy; social impact assessment, and CEL course design.
    • During Fall Quarter, participate in bi-weekly two-hour meetings every second and fourth Friday starting October 15, from 10 a.m. - 12 p.m.
    • Participate in two-hour quarterly meetings during Winter and Spring quarters.
    • Complete guided reflections and in Fall quarter, meet with an Engaged Teaching Education Specialist to discuss course design, assessments, and student engagement.
  3. Leadership (Year 2)
    • Serve as mentors to future Fellows, especially the following year’s cohort. 
    • Attend at least three CFF meetings or events; this could include serving on the Changemaker retreat panel, attending the Changemaker final retreat, serving on the application review committee, contributing to CFF research working meetings, or other CFF activities.

Project Guidelines

The Changemaker Faculty Fellows program is an opportunity for faculty to engage deeply with CEL. Each Fellow will enhance an existing CEL course or develop a new CEL course during the year. Generally, projects are developed and implemented during the first Fellowship year but in some instances the implementation of projects may extend into the second year. The Changemaker Faculty Fellowship award may be used to help implement this project or provide additional professional development support for participants. Possible project ideas include the following: 

  • Integration of CEL into an existing course where the CEL aspect is a new component of the curriculum; 
  • Creation of assessment tools or strategies for measuring the impact of CEL courses on undergraduate student learning outcomes, faculty, or community; 
  • Development of CEL in remote or hybrid learning environments;
  • Community-based course research projects that contribute to service-learning, equity, diversity, and inclusion; civic engagement; and scholarship of engagement literature, or that expand understanding of CEL within a discipline.

Support for course/project development will be discussed during meetings and through meetings with faculty partners familiar with CEL pedagogy. Final projects will be highlighted formally at the end of the program during the Fellows Reception. Projects may be adapted or changed during the year as participants develop in their understanding of CEL.

For more information about potential projects, contact Tricia Taylor Oliveira, Academic Internship Program Director,; Catherine Lettieri, Community Service Program Coordinator,; or Josephine Reloford-Doyle, Education Specialist, Engaged Teaching,

Application Submission and Selection Process

To be considered for the 2021-2023 Changemaker Faculty Fellows Community Engaged Learning program, please submit an online application form by July 21, 2021. Selected faculty will be notified by August 6, 2021.

  • The Project Proposal includes the following: 
    1. Your experience with community engaged service-learning, if any. 
    2. Your interest in the program and how you would benefit from the Fellowship. 
    3. How your department/unit would benefit from your participation. 
    4. Description of the proposed CEL project with the following information: 
      1. Summary and rationale of proposed CEL project 
      2. Potential impact on student engagement and student learning
      3. Potential challenges you foresee this project may encounter 
      4. Connection to community issues/needs 
      5. Prospective or existing community partner(s)
      6. If your project links to an existing academic course, please include the name of the course
      7. Expected project timeline
      8. Expected project budget
    5. Letter from your Department Chair or Dean confirming support for your application, project, and participation in the Changemaker Faculty Fellows required meetings and events.

Primary Points of Contact

Théo Gallegos, MPH
Administrative Assistant, Teaching + Learning Commons, Engaged Teaching Hub

Tricia Taylor Oliveira, M.A.
Program Director, Teaching + Learning Commons, Academic Internship Hub

Tentative Schedule

*Please note that meeting/event dates are subject to some changes.

Tentative schedule for 2021-2023 Fellows

Tentative schedule for 2021-2023 Fellows



June 15, 2021

Application Opens

July 21, 2021

Application Deadline

August 6, 2021

Announce Selected Faculty

After September 1, 2021

Funds Available

  • Year 1: $7500
  • Year 2: $2500

September 2021

Faculty Fellows Retreat

Fall Quarter 2021

Individual Consultations

Biweekly, October 2021-December  2021

Faculty Learning Community Sessions

Winter/Spring 2022

Quarterly Faculty Learning Community Sessions and Progress Report Due

Date TBD



Association of American Colleges and Universities. (2012). Bringing theory to practice project.

Curry-Stevens, A., Reyes, M. -E. & Coalition of Communities of Color (2014). Protocol for culturally responsive organizations. 

Eyler, J., Giles, D. E., Jr., Stenson, C. M., & Gray, C. J. (2001). At a glance: What we know about the effects of service-learning on college students, faculty, institutions and communities, 1993-2000 Third Edition.

Heidebrecht, L., & Balzer, G. (2020). Decolonial experimentations in international service learning research and practice learnings from Mayan Indigenous host communities. Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, 26(1).

Hernandez, K. (2017). Service learning as a political act in education: Bicultural foundations for a decolonizing pedagogy (1st ed.). Routledge. 

Jacoby, B. (1996). Service-learning in higher education: Concepts and practices. Jossey-Bass.

Kahne, J., & Westheimer, J. (1994). In the service of what? The politics of service learning. Phi Delta Kappan, 77, 592.

Marullo, S., & Edwards, B. (2000). From charity to justice: The potential of university-community collaboration for social change. American Behavioral Scientist, 43(5), 895–912. 

UC San Diego. (2021). Changemaker Institute.

University of Georgia The Office of Service-Learning. (2012). Service-learning fellows program. 

Ward, K., & Wolf-Wendel, L. (2000). Community-centered service learning: Moving from doing for to doing with. American Behavioral Scientist, 43(5), 767–780. 

UC San Diego's Changemaker Week Panel Discussion 

Watch this discussion with 2019-2020 Faculty Fellows, Dr. Andrews, Dr. Anh, and Dr. Forman describing their experiences, and takeaways from incorporating community engaged learning into their classrooms to create change for a more equitable and just future. Click here to see all of our Changemaker Community Engaged Learning Faculty Fellows.