Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 55.86
Liaison Aldo Pierini
Submission Date Sept. 16, 2021

STARS v2.2

Villanova University
AC-5: Immersive Experience

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer at least one immersive, sustainability-focused educational study program that is one week or more in length?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused immersive program(s) offered by the institution:

Villanova offers various sustainability-focused immersive programs in a few different disciplines. Each are listed and described below.

1) COMMUNITAS: A Living and Learning Community for First-Year Students, Environmental Learning Community
This program includes a humanities seminar that focuses holistically on the question "Who Am I?" in relation tho the natural environment and human culture. Students participate in a one-credit workshop style class called Villanova Experience (VEXP) that meets weekly to explore effective communications, issues and their impact on the natural world, ways to care for the natural world, and small group activities. Students all live together in a on-campus residence hall and participate in of-campus field trips to locations such as organic urban farms, eco-housing developments, and manufacturers of Eco-friendly products.

URL: https://www1.villanova.edu/villanova/studentlife/be_home/learningcommunities/values.html

2) Engineering Service Learning Trips.
All Engineering Service learning projects are designed with the objective to developing organizational sustainability within each partner community. Students act as outside consultants providing technical support and engineering design analysis. The goal of all projects is to support projects and partner organizations so that they may be self sustaining within their own communities. Students participating in trips may also be involved in sources, capstone projects, or independent studies which relate to and support trips. In addition to participating in a week-long trip to partner countries, students are involved in ongoing design and implementation meetings prior to and following each trip. Trips are in five locations. Each trip is described below.


A) Cambodia: College of Engineering students travel to Cambodia to support development efforts at the Caramanico School, built by Anne and Thomas Caramanico PE, CE ’71, MSCE ’83. This program focuses on the design and implementation of a model school for demonstrating best-practices in education and sustainability. 

B) Water for Waslala - Nicaragua: This service learning opportunity leads engineering students to the central mountains of Nicaragua to evaluate and develop water resources, renewable energy and communication systems. 

C) Cheypo Bayano Mission - Panama: Work with missionary priest Father Wally involves the development of a water resources master plan, flood control and prevention, and the use of solar array to provide for the community’s energy needs

D) Lifetime Wells- Ghana: help build and maintain hand pumps sustainably.

E) Profugo - India: Students work to develop a Center for Sustainability within community. The main focus of this program is to design a community center that focuses on sustainability and provides workshops related to sustainability topics such as agriculture, water, and the environment.

F) Costa Rica- Students participate in STEM education workshops with partners Universidad Latino Americana de Ciencia y Technologia (ULACIT) and the Society of Woman Engineers.

G) Ecuador- Students on this trip work in partnership with Escuela Superior Politecnica del Litoral (ESPOL). The main focus is the creation of solar home systems, educational intranet, and community outreach.

H) Indonesia- Projects focus on improving efficiencies in agriculture, renewable energy and sustainable water with Bogor Agricultural University

I) Liberia- The focus of the Liberia trip is on urban Water, Sanitation and Hygiene projects (WASH). In collaboration with Catholic Relief Services, students work to build sustainable water and sanitation infrastructure.

J) Madagascar- In partnership with Catholic Relief Services, projects in Madagascar focus on the sustainable management of piped water supply infrastructure.

K) Tanzania- The Tanzania trip focuses on sustainable water, sanitation and hygiene in schools in collaboration with Catholic Relief Services.

L)Peru- In collaboration with the Catholic University of Trujillo, and with WindAid, the project in Peru focuses on renewable energy implementation and educational outreach programs. In particular, the WindAid team focuses on installing wind turbines for rural communities that do not have access to grid electricity.

3) Campus Ministry Service and Justice Experiences: These trips are week long experiences which allow students, faculty, staff and alumni to get involved in serving the community. Through service and reflections, volunteers are transformed by identifying their connection with our global community as they experience another culture, spirituality, and socio-economic situation. We challenge our participants to become global citizens - not just citizens of the United States - as they use their education to change the lives of the poor. We hope this experience helps the volunteer to develop a personal commitment to making the world a better place by calling attention to the injustices of racism, poverty, sexism, etc. Trips specifically related to sustainability are described below.

URL: http://www1.villanova.edu/villanova/mission/campusministry/service/breakexperiences/listing.html

A) Bethlehem Farm - West Virginia: Located in central Appalachia, Bethlehem Farm is an intentional Catholic community that strives to transform lives through serving the local community and teaching sustainability. During the week at the Farm, volunteers work the surrounding community, pray together, learn about and from the people of Appalachia, and experience ways of practicing and living a sustainable life. Volunteers may find themselves doing a variety of work, from working alongside a family in repairing their home to practicing sustainability by working the farm and preparing the food it produces. This is a great domestic mission experience focused on the Farm’s four cornerstones of service, prayer, simplicity, and community.
URL: http://www.bethlehemfarm.net/main/

B) Camden, NJ - Center for Environmental Transformation: The Center for Environmental Transformation’s goal is to provide you opportunities to reach deeper understandings of your connection to the earth and to those communities and people who often disproportionately bear the environmental costs of our 21st century lifestyle.  Volunteers will participate in Hands-­on projects in the neighborhood such as: gardening, greening lots, working with children, and demolition projects, Eco-­reality tours of the neighborhood and city.  In addition, volunteers take part in interactive learning sessions on sustainability, environmental justice, Camden and its history, becoming agents of change, etc.
URL: http://camdencenterfortransformation.org

C) Ecological Justice and Simple Living (re-designed because of COVID: Students will work with the Appalachian Catholic Worker, Emmaus Farm and the Catholic Committee of Appalachia to discuss their place in their own communities by learning about Appalachian culture, values and justice issues. The host communities will share their stories, a bit about the work they do in Appalachia and the importance of justice work in this region.

Website URL where information about the institution’s immersive education programs is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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