Civic Engagement, Service-Learning Opportunities Distinguish MDC Students It’s been a very busy fall semester for Miami Dade College’s changemaking students. In October, 11 enterprising MDC students traveled to Northeastern University in Boston to attend the Clinton Global Initiative University (CGI U) meeting, which brings together more than 1,000 college students to discuss and develop new solutions to pressing global challenges. “Our students were able to join other changemakers from around the world to be inspired and to fine-tune their commitments to action,” said Josh Young, the director of the MDC’s Institute for Civic Engagement and Democracy (iCED) and coordinator of MDC’s CGI U cohort. As part of CGI U’s Commitment to Action, the participants developed projects intended to have a meaningful impact on a community in need. The MDC students refined their projects, which included a campus LGBTQ Resource Center and an online community for women in the workforce, during the three-day event. “Many young women are the first to attend college in their families and I am passionate about bridging the gap between young women entering the professional workforce,” said Vivien Aruwa, a North Campus student who is creating Bombshell in Business, an online community that offers support and advice for women launching their careers. As an Ashoka U Changemaker Campus, MDC is committed to advancing social innovation and educational pathways with solutions-oriented skills for students. With an office on every MDC campus, iCED promotes these causes by engaging students in multiple and diverse civic engagement and academic service-learning opportunities. With the 2018 midterm elections approaching, MDC students are encouraging locals to head to the polls through the non-profit Campus Vote Project and Andrew Goodman Foundation Vote Everywhere project. The participants are motivating students and faculty to take part in nonpartisan democratic engagement activities. Florida Campus Compact recently honored MDC for its excellence in student service and community engagement. North Campus student Monique Manalang Ruiz was named a 2017 Student Excellence in Service Award winner for her service and civic leadership. MDC was also a Community Partnership Award finalist for working with Engage Miami to bolster local voter engagement. – AP
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