Steans Center > For Community Partners > Service Learning Partnerships

Service Learning Partnerships

Academic service-learning (ASL) is a teaching method that integrates community service with curriculum. DePaul works on an academic quarter system (11 week quarters during fall, winter, spring and summer). ASL partnerships are community-based organizations looking for support from students. Types of service can be divided into four areas:

Direct Service 
Students undertake community service that directly benefits an organization's clientele/consumers through direct support of the organization's existing programming. Examples include tutoring youth, providing health screenings, and serving meals at a homeless shelter.

Project-Based Service
Students undertake an effort, individually or in groups, needed by the host community organization that results in a tangible product at the end of the term. Examples include, but are not limited to, developing an advertising campaign, creating or improving a webpage, assessing staff recruitment strategies or creating a strategic plan.

Community-Based Research
Students contribute to a research effort needed by the host organization, often for advocacy, program development, or fundraising purposes. These projects involves the community organization in most if not all phases of the research project, from generating the research question to analyzing the data. Students present research findings through presentations and report submitted to the organization at the end of the term.

Students support initiatives that directly address social, economic and political inequality and that lead to systemic change.

Community organizations interested in ASL partnerships should complete the Request for Service Learners Application. Upon receipt of the completed application, a representative from the Steans Center will contact you to schedule a site visit.

Partnership Development

The Steans Center develops mutually beneficial relationships with community-based organizations through Chicago. These relationships begin with in-person meetings, preferably at the location of the organizational partner. During the site visit, staff will gather information on the organization's programs, services, clientele. and structure. The Steans Center's primary focus on partnering with small to medium-size community-based organizations. These partnerships allow students to give crucial support to organizations through ASL courses and other community engagement programs.

For all questions, comments, and/or concerns regarding ASL community partnerships at the Steans Center please contact Rubén Álvarez Silva at or (773) 325-8132.