Engaged Learning Forum Series

The Engaged Learning Forum advances the Center for Social Concerns' approach to practicing Catholic social teaching through community-engaged research, teaching, and learning by gathering learning communities that connect campus and community experts around social concerns. The Engaged Learning Forum gathers all types of engaged scholars to promote all types of engaged scholarship. Forums welcome community partners, students, staff, and faculty. Presentations vary in their appeal from addressing the curious novice to providing advanced learning for people experienced in academic community engagement, such as alums of the Community Engagement Faculty Institute and Community-Engaged Learning Coordinators. They happen in person and online, wherever the spirit calls us to gather!

Forums take many forms, including, but not limited to: 

  • highlighting a model of exemplary work (e.g., an engaged department or community-engaged course),
  • sharing engaged research/scholarship in progress for feedback, 
  • providing awareness around a developing campus/community issue,
  • launching/celebrating a relevant book through a scholarly talk,
  • showcasing the results of/work in progress funded by Community Impact Grants,
  • analyzing engaged learning experiences, and
  • showcasing a community-based scholar whose work expands local knowledge and/or skills.

Our goal is to provide a regular series of robust conversations that gather interested and active engaged scholars and practitioners!

Summer 2021


“Back to Normal” and Continuing to Grow: Resources, Opportunities, and Relevant Notre Dame Policies for Community Organizations in Fall 2021

August 19, 2021 | 11:00 a.m.–12:15 p.m. | virtual event

Humberto “Beto” Delgado, Assistant Executive Director, La Casa de Amistad
Emily Sullivan, Volunteer/Community-Engaged Learning Coordinator, Robinson Community Learning Center

Fall semester 2021 is almost here and it brings with it an exciting development: a return to in-person community-university partnerships! Please join us to kick off the new academic year with a conversation about new possibilities, current Notre Dame policies, and community preferences for collaborating in 2021-22. This event will introduce new resources and offer space for any questions you may have about working with Notre Dame students, faculty, and staff this year.

Like you, we are excited and relieved to begin a year that will once again include in-person engagement and community events on-campus. After more than 18 months of limited engagement, we are eager to have Notre Dame students, faculty, and staff collaborate with South Bend area organizations more fully and in-person once more. We will forever be grateful for the adaptability, ingenuity, and patience shown by so many in recent months. While COVID-19 will continue to be a part of our lives for the foreseeable future, your continued commitment, insights, and innovation have allowed us to make significant progress in returning to usual patterns of collaboration. 

At the same time, of course, “back to normal” is only a starting point. The Center for Social Concerns is committed to working energetically with members of the community to continue to improve, expand, and elevate the size and quality of our community partnerships. This Engaged Learning Forum will therefore present new resources and engagement possibilities we are developing based on what we have learned in recent months. Please join us to learn more about these resources and lend your voice to their continued development. As always, we remain committed to positive community impact and your perspective is essential in that process.

Please indicate if you will join by completing this registration form by 10:00am, August 19, 2021

Beyond Sanctuary: Changing the Subject to Immigrant-Led Movements for Justice

July 8,  2021 | 11am-12:15pm | virtual event | join via Zoom

Presenters: Dara Marquez, Volunteer Field Organizer with Movimiento Cosecha; Jason Shenk, Quaker Minister and Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary (AMBS) course instructor; Janna L. Hunter-Bowman, Ph.D,. AMBS Assistant Professor of Peace Studies and Christian Social Ethics

“Excuse me, what if what we need and want is not to go into your sanctuary but for you to join us in the streets? Will you do that?” asked Dara Marquez, during a 2017 gathering with faith communities that were preparing to provide sanctuary in their buildings.

Immigration is a major issue for the North American churches, and projections of climate migration suggest it will become an even larger one. The sanctuary movement has been the primary model for churches responding to immigrants since the 1980s. In it, churches are the subject and immigrants the vulnerable beneficiaries. This poses a problem for Movimiento Cosecha, a national immigrant-led movement that uses strikes, boycotts, and other nonviolent means to fight for dignity, respect and permanent protection for undocumented immigrants. Many of the immigrant leaders constituting Cosecha’s base are people of Christian faith. Yet Cosecha members find that churches tend to ignore immigrants’ agency, including with movements like Cosecha.  This propensity has contributed to various forms of disconnection, including between Cosecha members and their nourishing communities. This participatory research project aims to expose limitations of common approaches to immigrant communities and the troubling assumptions that often accompany them. For example, the sanctuary model alone is no longer viable due to assumptions about agency and vulnerability that govern it. The initiative explores approaches that center immigrant agency.

This conversation will be led by engaged research partners Dara Marquez, Jason Shenk, and Janna L. Hunter-Bowman. They look forward to discussing their model of engaged research, which delineates the relationship between practice and research, as well as the initiative’s contributions to both. As a campus community that strives to build relationships of love and justice informed by Catholic Social Teaching, this is an opportunity to consider how we show up for immigrant populations and how we can be more accountable in our community-university partnerships.

Please indicate if you will join by completing this registration form by 10:00am, July 8, 2021

Anti-Asian Violence in South Bend and Indiana: Understanding and Combating Discrimination in Our Communities

June 29, 2021 | 11am-12:15pm | virtual event | join via Zoom

Presenters: Tengfei Luo, Professor of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, University of Notre Dame; Black Lives Matter South Bend Representatives; Sharon Yoon, Assistant Professor of Korean Studies, University of Notre Dame; Kristine Yuen, LinkedIn Design Manager, Notre Dame alumna, and former South Bend resident; Lulama Moyo, Center for Social Concerns, University of Notre Dame

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, people of Asian descent around the world have experienced increased attacks, discrimination, and unfair blame for the development and spread of the coronavirus. In the United States, these attacks continue to rise exponentially with perpetrators emboldened by the normalization of racial slurs such as “China virus” that give tacit encouragement for bigotry and xenophobia.

Of course, Anti-Asian bigotry in the United States is nothing new. From the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act to the internment of Japanese Americans during World War II to the recent Muslim ban, anti-Asian discrimination has been written into government policy that, in turn, has normalized everyday expressions of discrimination.

As recent the high-profile killings of four Sikh men in Indianapolis and food truck driver Shane Nguyen in Fort Wayne have shown, this discrimination is occurring in our state, our region of Northern Indiana, and in South Bend. 

Please bring your questions, stories, and ideas to join academic and community experts for this collaborative discussion about anti-Asian racism nationwide, in Indiana, and in local communities—and what can be done to stop it.

Please indicate if you will join by completing this registration form by 10:00am, June 29, 2021


Crafting New Tables: Reimagining Our Research Community as it Relates to Racial Justice in South Bend
June 15, 2021 | 11:00am-12:15pm | virtual | join via Zoom

Presenters: Amaryst Parks, University of Notre Dame Phd student in Peace Studies and Sociology; Debra Stanley, Co-founder of Imani Unidad; De Bryant, Professor of Psychology and the Director of the Social Action Project at Indiana University of South Bend; Lulama Moyo, Community Engaged Learning Assistant Program Director, Center for Social Concerns

Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to the United States Congress in 1968, once said: “If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair.” This metaphor, in its many manifestations, has helped propel conversation surrounding power, privilege, and positionality. But we are realizing that it’s no longer enough to get a “seat at the table” anymore especially when we are crafting strategies for intersectional racial justice work in Black and Brown communities and bringing these narratives to the forefront of the academy. This is especially important when the academy is seen by many as a silencing colonial space and “[...]scientific research is implicated in the worst excesses of colonialism remains a powerful remembered history for many of the world’s colonized peoples” (Decolonizing Methodologies, Linda Tuhiwai Smith 2012). When navigating effective participatory research we need to advocate for rebuilding our tables together. Please join us in reimagining our own community-university tables. The conversation will be led by Amaryst Parks, a University of Notre Dame PhD student in Peace Studies and Sociology. Their research concerns paths to liberation (especially for young Black people) and intergenerational, learning- and learner-centered education spaces.Amaryst will be joined by Debra Stanley, De Bryant, and other expert colleagues from the consortium universities and community.

Please indicate if you will join by completing this registration form by 10:00am, June 15, 2021

Spring 2021

Performing an Experiment in Civic Hope: Building Partnerships Across the Sciences and the Arts to Pursue Community Wellbeing

May 3, 2021 | 5:30-7:00 p.m. | virtual event | join via Zoom

Presenters: Jenna Coalson, Assistant Professor of the Practice, Biological Sciences and Eck Institute for Global Health and Brad Burgess, Artistic Director, The Living Theatre 

The COVID-19 pandemic exploited existing economic and health disparities, lack of trust in institutions, political polarization, and failures in communication and outreach. These problems were not new, merely exacerbated by the pandemic, highlighting the critical need for rebuilding with a more resilient, equitable, and just society. Addressing such complex challenges demand innovation that crosses traditional boundaries, both academic and societal. As we prepare to move forward as a society, what can the Arts and Sciences do together to work towards building better public health and wellbeing in our community? What are the missing links that can be better connected, calculated, or communicated?

Local representatives in the arts, sciences, and community activism have been developing ideas that engage these questions. Join us in performing this experiment in Civic Hope! Be ready to give your feedback, and lookout for possible opportunities to partner with some of the more than 15 community experts and organizers who are looking to innovate for the benefit of the Michiana population.

Please indicate if you will join by completing this registration form by 4:00pm, May 3, 2021


Democratic Engagement on Campus: A Look at ND Votes Pre and Post the 2020 Election Cycle

April 19, 2021 | 11am -12:15pm | virtual event | join via Zoom

Presenters: ND Votes Leaders: Rachel Sabnani, Matthew Cotner, Patrick Aimone, Madeline Ward, Adair Molinsky

Jay Brandenberger: Director, Assessment and Engaged Scholarship and Lulama (Lulu) Moyo, Community Engaged Learning Program Assistant Director

NDVotes, supported by the Center for Social Concerns, the Rooney Center for American Democracy, and the Minor in Constitutional Studies, is a strong advocate for democratic and civic engagement at the University of Notre Dame. Their efforts during the 2020 Presidential election cycle were exceptional. Please join us as the ND Votes leadership team shares their experience and vision for campus democratic engagement. They will present results from the ALL IN Campus Challenge that Notre Dame participated in, and explore what it means to integrate campus democratic engagement efforts during a time of polarization. Jay Brandenberger will also share data from a November study of campus voting trends and perspectives. We welcome faculty/staff, students, and community partners within Notre Dame and the consortium to take part in this Engaged Learning Forum to discuss democratic engagement goals within your own areas as we look to bridge networks and integrate efforts.

Please indicate if you will join us by completing this registration form by April 18, 2021.

This event qualifies as credit for Certificate in Community Engagement and Public Scholarship (CEPS). Graduate students register through GradConnect


Nurturing Community During Times of Upheaval: A Case Study of Community-University Collaborative Events During COVID-19

March 30, 2021 | 10:00 a.m. | virtual event | Join via Zoom

Presenters: Ludy McCollester, Community Engaged Learning Coordinator for the Boys and Girls Club, South Bend. Lulama Moyo, Center for Social Concerns University of Notre Dame. David Lassen, Center for Social Concerns at the University of Notre Dame.

This Engaged Learning Forum will explore theory and best practices around community-university partnerships in times of crisis. The session will focus on identifying and responding to a variety of types of crises, comparing the slow-moving, chronic crises that community-university partnerships often address and faster-moving crises such as the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of a local case study, the ELF will also explore the creation, design, and impact of a series of specially-designed community-centered, collaborative conversations that were part of the Engaged Learning Forum Summer Series from May to July 2020. These events and the existing literature suggest a six step crisis identification and response model that can be used in future crises. This will be an interactive discussion that will invite participants to evaluate recent responses to COVID-19 and begin to draft organizational response plans.

Please indicate if you will join us by completing this registration form  by March 29, 2021.

This event qualifies as credit for the Certificate in Community Engagement and Public Scholarship (CEPS). Graduate students register through GradConnect.


Event Date
Engaged Learning Forum | "Back to Normal" and Continuing to Grow 08/19/2021 - 11:00am to 12:15pm
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Upcoming Events

August 2021

Engaged Learning Forum | "Back to Normal" and Continuing to Grow
Thursday, August 19, 2021 - 11:00am to 12:15pm
Information Session | Social Concerns Seminars
Monday, August 23, 2021 - 4:00pm
Meet Me at the CSC!
Monday, August 23, 2021 - 4:00pm to 6:00pm
Information Session | Social Concerns Seminars
Tuesday, August 24, 2021 - 4:00pm
Information Session | Social Concerns Seminars
Wednesday, August 25, 2021 - 4:00pm

September 2021

Application Close | Community Impact Grants
Monday, September 13, 2021 - 12:00am to 11:45pm