Collaborative Opportunity Grant
The University of California Riverside’s Office of Undergraduate Education has received a $50,000 grant to ramp up community-engaged learning opportunities for undergraduate students. The funds will help match students with community service opportunities related to their coursework.
The award, called a Collaborative Opportunity Grant, is from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, or APLU, and the Coalition of Urban Serving Universities, or USU. Twelve universities received $50,000 each with the grant funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to encourage community partnerships that aim to improve student success.
At UCR, the money will support integrating and increasing efforts to match volunteers and interns with community opportunities, said Elizabeth Claassen Thrush, educational initiatives coordinator for Undergraduate Education. This includes streamlining and subsidizing the application and background check process, leading orientations for students, tracking interactions through an online learning module, providing opportunities for academic reflection, and generating reports. Key to this effort are four part-time student coordinators, paid by the grant, who oversee processes, advise students, and maintain communication with community partners.