UMass CESL promotes learning for life-long, engaged citizenship, partnering with communities on and off campus to work collectively for a more just society.

Citizen Scholars Program (CSP)

Welcome!  CESL's Citizen Scholars Program (CSP) is a two-year, academic service-learning program that connects real experiences in the community to coursework, bringing learning to life! This curricular civic leadership program partners with community organizations to work toward community goals and to help students develop the knowledge, skills, and vision they need to build community, be effective citizens, and advocate for social justice.

By joining CESL's CSP, you are making a set of commitments:
· To grow as an active citizen in democracy, building your capacity to work in collaboration with others to build a more just society.
· To grow as a scholar, unleashing your imagination and focusing your curiosity to discover the knowledge and the skills that will enable you to work effectively for change.
· To be a co-creator of a learning community that supports its members in their growth and their action.




In 2014-2015, CSP includes the following components:
·Four 4-credit courses offered by the program which must be taken in sequence
·A minimum of 30 hours of community service by each student each semester
·Course projects aimed at creating structural change in regard to social problems, developed in collaboration with community stakeholders
·A series of events (such as  retreats before each semester, evening gatherings during the semester, and a recognition ceremony in the spring) aimed at building a learning community focused on service-learning, activism, and social justice
·The opportunity to apply for a grant (the Dave Schimmel Internship) of up to $2,000 to work over the summer with State Representative Ellen Story

Read the stories of two CSP students, Aaron Buford and Lindsay McCluskey.

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Heather McCormack (CSP' 10) combined service at the Amherst Survival Center's food pantry with her course work in CSP. Citizen Scholars join with others to lobby for the Pell Grant in 2011.Aaron Buford (CSP' 08) and Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick talk about their shared commitment to public service.