Community Based Learning
Together with the Centre for Social Concerns based on campus, the Dublin CBL programme places volunteer students in a range of service organizations across the city. Whether working with early school leavers, elderly people living alone, or the homeless community of Dublin, ND students come in contact with members of Irish society who would usually go unmet by young American visitors. This experience, therefore, gives the participants an unrivalled insight into Irish life, as they learn from people striving to improve conditions for the most marginalized groups. It also exposes Irish people to ND students.
The participants keep a reflective diary of their experiences, which facilitates an advanced level of discussion in the biweekly review sessions held with the dedicated CBL Co-Ordinator and Programme Director. These discussions act as a tool to integrate the community work and classroom work, as students gain a deeper understanding of Irish culture and political policy through practical experience.
The CBL Programme celebrates the transformational power of service – the idea that each individual can make an impact on the lives of others- and more importantly themselves – through volunteering and community service. The importance of fusing faith and action, intellect and compassion, education and service cannot be understated, and through CBL our Dublin students have an opportunity to exercise their social responsibility as they deepen their understanding of Catholicism, Ireland, and of themselves.