Liberating Service Learning: Part One of a Conversation with Prof. Randy Stoecker

Prof. Randy Stoecker

For this January 2020 podcast, Lucia and Tina spoke with Randy Stoecker, Professor in the Department of Community and Environmental Sociology at the University of Wisconsin, with a joint appointment in the Center for Community and Economic Development. Stoecker works in two spheres, the university and its extension program. Some recent courses include “Community Organizing” and “Research Design and Practice in Sociology.” In part one of the podcast Stoecker discusses the importance of studying change and making change, connecting students with community partners. Stoecker challenges traditional institutionalized service learning and the assumptions of higher education civic engagement as a volunteer pipeline (that connects with future careers). In other words, he investigates the charity versus change dichotomy. One question that has to be asked: Does institutional service learning create social change?