Does Civic Engagement in the Classroom Lead to Future Civic Engagement?

by Katie Bradley | Mar 29, 2016

Dr. Kim VogtMarian University has been selected as a recipient of a Science Education for New Civic Engagements and Responsibilities (SENCER) National Science Foundation Post-Institute Implementation Award following a competitive review process. Kim Vogt, Ph.D., assistant professor of biology, will lead the funded effort in collaboration with Paul Morgan, Ph.D., chemistry lecturer at Butler University.  

Vogt had incorporated a civic engagement component into her biostatistics and cell biology courses for more than two years, but the award from SENCER will allow her to research the impact of matching civic engagement activities to students’ major/course material in the context of student learning and attitudes towards future civic engagement.

“I added a civic engagement component to the curriculum because it’s good for the students and it relates the Franciscan sponsorship values back to their majors and what they are studying,” said Vogt. “Now, the question is, ‘will they be more likely to do it in the future?’”

One of the students’ opportunities is being a part of Marian University’s exhibit at Celebrate Science Indiana, a free public event that engages Hoosiers of all ages and backgrounds in interactive STEM-related activities and discussions that aim to ignite the curiosity and imagination, and encourage them to explore STEM-based education and career opportunities. With more than 1,000 visitors to the exhibit and 15-20 students staffing the booth at any given moment, the event allows Knights to engage with the younger generation about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

Through the awarding of this grant, Marian University is involved in a two-year concentrated effort to improve STEM education at Marian, throughout central Indiana, and universities nationwide.

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