Welcome to the
Community and Public Service Program
Community engagement in the United States, and
indeed across the globe, is more important than
ever. Social welfare retrenchments, globalization,
economic insecurity and changing levels of social
capital have challenged the most marginalized people
to have their voices heard and needs met. Community
engagement is one of the central mechanisms for
fulfilling the promises of a democratic society.
The CPSP serves as a nexus connecting the university
to the community. Our focus is on meeting the needs
of community organizations by connecting them with
faculty and students that can help them to advance
their mission and build their capacities. We provide
students with the opportunity to engage with public
and non-profit organizations in exchange for elective
credits. With 400 organizations to choose from,
CPSP offers a wide range of opportunities for faculty
engagement and student volunteering.
Besides the obvious benefits to a diverse group
of constituencies and organizations, community
engagement offers a variety of rewards to students.
This includes a sense of satisfaction, deepening
levels of compassion and personal growth, as well
as nurturing a lifelong commitment to civic engagement.
Community engagement is a challenging endeavor
that gives student-citizens the chance to reflect
on salient issues in a democratic society. These
issues include diversity and discrimination, the
roles of the non-profit and public sectors, as
well as consideration of individual career goals.
We are creating new partnerships between community
organizations, faculty and students that will deepen
the capacities of communities to address their
needs. We hope you choose to become a part of this
Loretta Pyles, Ph.D.
Director, Community and Public Service Program
Associate Professor, School of Social Welfare
Contact us at 442-5683 or Swalsh@albany.edu