Our Model

  • Ethics

    The Center for Civic Engagement’s vision is to advance the land-grant mission of the university by fostering meaningful connections between campus and communities to effect positive change in society. In conducting that work in an ethical manner, Center for Civic Engagement staff will:

    • Adhere to all Washington State ethics laws (RCW 42.52)
    • Work with fairness, integrity, and impartiality.
    • Recognize and address conflicts of interest in personal and professional interactions.
    • Communicate with accurate and reputable information (including social media, marketing materials, public statements, etc.).
    • Protect the confidentiality of stakeholder and community member’s sensitive information.
    • Do no harm to the community, including campus, and to those served in the community.
    • Strive to hold stakeholders (staff, faculty, students, community partners) accountable to the same ethical standards.
    • Review ethical statements periodically and update practices as necessary.
  • Inclusion

    In alignment with the Washington State University Non-Discrimination Statement and the Center for Civic Engagement’s (CCE) values, the CCE is committed to welcoming all students, staff, faculty, community members, and others in our work and daily activities. The CCE respects the dignity of all people and strives to foster a safe, positive environment for all.

    The CCE Recognizes

    • the contribution of each individual’s identity and lived experience to a learning environment of inclusive collaboration;
    • the need to challenge everyday practices of exclusion through engagement in continued dialogue and growth

    The CCE Strives to

    • cultivate a safe, inclusive learning environment for faculty and student engagement in the larger community;
    • partner with the larger WSU and global communities to address systems and practices of exclusion including racism, heterosexism, ableism, classism, xenophobia, ageism, sexism, transphobia, microaggressions, ethnocentrism, unexamined privilege, and all forms of discrimination and inequality.

    If you have questions about the CCE’s inclusion statement or would like to request or discuss accommodation options, please contact the CCE Inclusion Committee at cce@wsu.edu.

  • Learning Outcomes

    Student civic engagement is a form of experiential learning, a cyclical model of experience, reflection, conceptualization, and testing (Kolb 1984). WSU students who participate in civic engagement activities have the opportunity to enhance their academic and personal growth in these areas:

    • Civic Responsibility: Understanding issues in the community and the responsibility of citizens to participate in the democratic process and work toward positive change in society
    • Self Awareness and Efficacy: Identifying one’s own values and interests; respecting and appreciating the perspectives and life situations of others; and gaining confidence to take action that makes a difference
    • Academic Success: Acquiring and strengthening knowledge by applying academic concepts to real issues in the community, leading to success in the classroom and development of professional skills
  • Reflection

    How service learning reflection can be approached

    Three simple frameworks for approaching and facilitating service learning reflection discussions based on individual and/or team service experiences are described below.

    Read an overview of Reflection from the University of Minnesota Center for Community-Engaged Learning page.

    Four Cs of Reflection

    Effective strategies for fostering reflection are based on four core elements of reflection known as the Four Cs. These elements are described below:

    Continuous reflection: Reflection should be an ongoing component in the learner's education, happening before, during, and after an experience.

    Connected reflection: Link the "service" in the community with the structured "learning" in the classroom. Without structured reflection, students may fail to bridge the gap between the concrete service experience and the abstract issues discussed in class.

    Challenging reflection: Instructors should be prepared to pose questions and ideas that are unfamiliar or even uncomfortable for consideration by the learner in a respectful atmosphere.

    Contextualized reflection: Ensures that the reflection activities or topics are appropriate and meaningful in relation to the experiences of the students.

    From "A Practitioner's Guide to Reflection in Service Learning: Student Voices and Reflections" by Eyler, Giles & Schmiede

    Three Lenses

    Lenses that can be used to focus reflection are:

    • Mirror: looking at what we have learned about ourselves (as individuals and team members)
    • Microscope: looking at what we have learned about community agencies and issues
    • Binoculars: looking at what we have learned about broader student development issues and social/global problems

    Mirror: Reflection about one's self as an individual and as part of a team.

    • Pre-experience: What might you learn about yourself by participating in this service project? What challenges and opportunities does this project offer us as a staff team?
    • Post-experience: What did you learn about yourself by participating in this service project? What did you learn about working together as a team?

    Microscope: Reflection about the service project itself and its value to the agency and community members.

    • Pre-experience: What do you know about the agency and the community issues/needs it addresses?
    • Post-experience: What did you learn about the agency? What do they contribute to the community? What assets do they have? What needs/challenges do they have?

    Binoculars: Reflection about opportunities for student development and for consideration of social issues.

    • Pre-experience: How can involvement in service-learning projects contribute to student development and learning?
    • Post experience: What is the relationship between local action and global problems?
    • From The Big Dummy's Guide to Service-Learning: 27 Simple Answers to Good Questions on Faculty, Programmatic, Student, Administrative, and Non-Profit Issues by Mark Cooper

    What? So What? Now What?

    These simple but powerful questions direct the flow of reflective thought through the following phases:

    • Descriptive phase (what?)
    • The interpretive phase (so what?)
    • The active phase (now what?)

    A similar approach uses the questions:

    • What did you see? (observation)
    • How do you feel about it? (introspection)
    • How can you apply it? (analysis)


    • What did you learn about the organization that you did not know prior to your service experience?
    • What did you observe about yourself or your team that you had not noticed before?

    So what?

    • How does your service learning project contribute to the wellbeing of the Pullman community?
    • Have your feelings about the agency/organization (or the social issues it addresses) changed as a result of the service learning project? If so, how?

    Now what?

    • In what ways could you or your team continue to build on your service learning experience to address social issues-locally or globally?
    • How might service learning experiences contribute to student leadership development and involvement?

    From "A Practitioner's Guide to Reflection in Service Learning: Student Voices and Reflections" by Eyler, Giles & Schmiede

    Leadership for Social Change

    This model examines leadership development from three levels:

    • The Individual: What personal qualities can service learning help develop that foster positive social change?
    • The Group: What were the greatest moments of your or your team's work together on the service learning project?
    • The Community: How can leadership for the common good make a difference in our society?

    From "A Social Change Model of Leadership Development" UCLA

  • Social Change Model of Leadership

    Leadership is a process, not a position. Through the Social Change Model of Leadership (SCM), leadership rests on the values of equity, social justice, self-knowledge, personal empowerment, collaboration, citizenship, and service. The CCE uses the SCM as a lens with which to understand community engagement and change.

    The Higher Education Research Institute (1996, p. 16) describes leadership as “All people are potential leaders. Leadership involves collaborative relationships that lead to collective action grounded in the shared values of people who work together to effect positive change.”

    This view on leadership is inclusive and is essential to creating a better world for us all. To support this view of leadership, the CCE collaborates with a variety of community organizations to offer civic engagement experiences for every WSU student. We seek to provide students an opportunity to learn about themselves through learning about the components of their community.

    Our goal through these activities is to create change.

    “Change… is the ultimate goal of the creative process of leadership to make a better world and a better society for self and others.” (HERI 1996, p. 21)

    Modeling Change

    The Social Change Model is understood as consisting of three components (individual, group, and society) and seven values, known as the seven C’s. In the SCM, an individual can enter the process at any point: as an individual, as part of a group, or as a member of society. Within each component, you will find values that are important to creating change. Change is the hub which the SCM revolves around.

    The first component, the individual, includes the values of consciousness of self, congruence, and commitment. The second component, the group, includes the values of collaboration, common purpose, and controversy with civility. The final component, society, includes citizenship as its value.

  • Strategic Goals
    1. Enhance the learning, success, and civic development of all WSU students through diverse civic engagement and leadership experiences.
    2. Develop key campus and community partnerships that promote the mission and values of the CCE and address community-identified needs.
    3. Align the CCE with institutional initiatives that support a culture of engagement, research, and the land-grant mission of WSU.
    4. Maximize program resources to respond to increased responsibility for campus-community engagement.