For more than 35 years, the Community and Public Service Program (CPSP) has been central to community engagement efforts at the University at Albany. Born out of the highly turbulent student protests of the late 60s, the first community service project was completed by University at Albany students in 1970.
In 1971, UAlbany’s community service project moved from the Office of Innovative Education to the School of Social Welfare. Dr. Charles O'Reilly and faculty member Hedi McKinley organized the structure of the Community Service Project. While the CPSP is administered differently now, the idea of student service to the community and civic responsibility is still a central feature of the Community and Public Service Program. organizations and students collaborate for an integrated field learning and work experience.
- RSSW-291 is a two-credit course that is available to second semester freshmen, sophomores, juniors and seniors. It requires 60 hours of community service and two writing assignments. It requires a class permission number to register. S/U graded.
- RSSW-290 is a three-credit course that is available to sophomores, juniors and seniors. This course requires 100 hours of community service and two writing assignments. It requires a class permission number to register. S/U graded.
- RSSW-390 is a three-credit course that is available to sophomores, juniors and seniors who have completed the prerequisite course of RSSW-290. This course requires 100 hours of community service, selected readings and two advanced critical writing assignments commensurate with an upper-level course. RSSW 290 is a prerequisite. S/U graded.
- Our on-campus courses are offered in the fall, spring and summer semesters.
The courses are PASS/FAIL.
Community Service Today
Organization placements include working in homeless shelters, hospitals and healthcare facilities, schools and government organizations. Whether students are helping the homeless, helping people who are living in nursing homes, or working with computer databases in New York State departments, they are providing valuable service to the Capital Region. Many organizations are short-staffed and under-funded. Students supplement work activities in a variety of settings. Student volunteers provide valuable help in an age of diminished funding in both the public and non-profit sectors.
A student can earn up to six credits by completing 100 hours
of volunteer service in courses RSSW-290 and RSSW-390 in separate semesters; and, they can earn an additional two credits by completing 60 hours in RSSW-291. All sophomores, juniors and seniors are eligible without regard to their majors. Second semester freshmen can take RSSW-291.
Students may choose to volunteer at one of nearly 400 not-for-profit and public organizations in the Capital Region. To learn how to get credit for community engagement, review this website, stop by Social Sciences 112 or call 442-5683. The courses count for elective credits for students in all academic disciplines. The CPSP is a program of the School of Social Welfare. You can go directly to the SSW site by clicking on the link to the left.
CPSP experience helps students integrate classroom learning with future academic and career goals. CPSP staff is available to help students select appropriate placements. Each student is supervised, on-site, and the field supervisors communicate student progress directly to the CPSP Office.
The CPSP staff is available to help students select an appropriate placement and to assist students to satisfactorily complete the course requirements.