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

Opportunities for Students

Civic Engagement (CE) and Service-Learning (SL) courses are offered in many departments each semester.

Courses Offered in Fall 2017

List of ALL UMass courses designated as Civic Engagement (CE) or Service-Learning (SL) 

Transportation to Community Partner Sites
Each course instructor will have information specific to their course.
Some community partners are accessible by PVTA. 
Sometimes students car pool. 
Other courses have a van or bus that brings students to their sites.
We also offer a CESL bus to several a sites in Holyoke, Monday-Thursday afternoons. 

UMass to Holyoke Bus 

Multi-Semester Opportunities at UMass 

In these programs student enroll in a series of courses, over multiple semesters. They offer a variety of  student leadership opportunities.

  • IMPACT!   a Residential Academic Program (RAP) for first-year students, run by CESL.
  • The Citizen Scholars Program,  a two-year service-learning and leadership development program, run by CESL.
  • The Boltwood Project, connects students to people with disabilities, partnering with 12 local community organizations, run by CESL
  • Community-Engaged Research (CER), a way to learn research skills and create meaningful outcomes with and for communities
  • The UMass Alliance for Community Transformation (UACT),   a Curricular Alternative Spring Break run by the Department of Anthropology in partnerhsip with CESL.
  • Student Bridges, a year-long program with a college access & success focus partnered with programs in Holyoke & Springfield.  
  • TEAMS, where students tutor in schools throughout the Pioneer Valley. Open to both undergraduates and graduate students, is run by Bob Maloy and Sharon Edwards in the College of Education.
  • Community Journalism, which partners UMass students with students at Commerce High School in Springfield, is run by Nick McBride in the Journalism Dept.

Civic Engagement & Public Service Certificate & CivX BDIC Major

Certificate in Civic Education and Public Service  -  Students choose 6 courses from a wide array of approved courses in 5 content areas: Issues of Social Justice, Public Policy, Diverse Publics, Civics & Political Theory, and Civic Leaderhsip & Community Organizing, plus 3 Service-Learning experiences.

Civic Engagement + X or CivX  A Bachelor’s Degree with Individual Concentration (BDIC) major 
The CivX major in BDIC allows students to combine a curriculum in civic engagement and a set of service-learning courses, selecting from a wide array of approved courses, plus a set of courses, chosen by each student, reflecting their individual “X Factor” - her or his own particular interest or passion.

Service-Learning Abroad
You can participate in community engaged courses while studying abroad and in some programs you can earn credit towards the UMass Civic Engagement & Public Service Certificate. Read more here.

Community engaged courses in the Five Colleges
Additional service-learning courses (also called Community-Based Learning courses) are offered by our partner colleges in the Five College CBL consortium and are open to all UMass students.


After Graduation-

Service Year

Are you interested in doing a year of service?  Many opportunities await you here

Visit us at UMass CESL to learn more about these opportunities in 611 Goodell, 9-5, Monday through Friday



Read what UMass students are saying about their Service-Learning experiences on the CESL Blog

Undergraduate Research Publishing Opportunities
The Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning and Community-Based Research.

Volunteer Opportunities
Students may also volunteer in the community through a variety of UMass Registered Student Organizations.