Which community will we partner with?

In thinking about ways to integrate SL into business writing, my first thought was the “service” part in which our students would partner with a local group and “help them” by making a newsletter or other document for them, thereby learning about audiences, research, listening, customizing, etc. This seemed useful but daunting because of having to find groups and facilitate.

I also thought more about the concept of community – the OSU community and the Corvallis or regional community. If community based means we work together with each side learning from the others, then I could not see this working as well with some local non-profits. What were they learning from our students? Where exactly was the partnership?

So I thought about a project that one of our GTAs did while teaching Business Writing winter term. He partnered with INTO OSU to focus on intercultural communication and had students pair up for conversation. At least some of the business writing students featured their international partner in their final newsletter project.

Partnering with the INTO OSU community to forge a stronger OSU community seems like a good possibility, so I contacted INTO and will meet with them on Tuesday. I see several advantages to working with them. It helps our two student groups get better acquainted. It helps domestic students understand about global workplace communication and it helps international students understand about the American workplace. Many INTO students are business majors, so this could be useful for them. I am now thinking that the partnership could focus on the Jobs Unit, which involves reports on jobs and organizations, cover letters and resumes. I’ll know more after meeting with them Tuesday.

Another reason I like this idea is that there would be no need for off campus transportation. That will save on time and money.

So tonight I’m working on some specific community based learning outcomes to add to the syllabus. I’m looking forward to everyone’s ideas when we meet tomorrow.



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