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Wednesday, October 11 • 7:30am - 9:00am
Mind Matters Town Halls: A High Impact, Collaborative GE Experience (90 mins)

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New civic learning requirements in general education courses at Cal State LA enabled faculty to collaborate with Student Life staff to bring high impact practices and engaged learning to first year students. Students participate in problem solving town halls focused on mental wellness and community based learning. This transformational collaboration enhances the Mind Matters initiative on inner well being led by the University President and helps improve the campus climate and positively impact the academic success of new students. Presenters will discuss this high impact practice, which combines classroom education and student engagement activities. Over 700 students participated in the program in its pilot year and participation doubled to 1500 this year. Presenters will detail the problem-solving assignment and logistics of the Town Hall as a model of a collaborative process to strengthen engagement at Cal State LA, an often challenging task for an urban, metropolitan university. Kuh (2008) indicates that historically underserved students benefit more from high impact practices, but are less likely to participate in them. At Cal State LA, 70% of students are underrepresented, 64% are first generation, and 97% receive some form of financial aid. Because the town halls are embedded within a required course, this ensures that underrepresented students with high need participate in those experiences. This experience helps de-stigmatize mental wellness issues, but also enables students to assist peers and family members which can have an even larger impact within our communities. Lastly, assessment data of this Town Hall experience will be shared.

avatar for Nancy Wada-McKee

Nancy Wada-McKee

Vice President for Student Life, California State University, Los Angeles
avatar for Michael Willard

Michael Willard

Faculty Director of Service Learning, Cal State LA

Wednesday October 11, 2017 7:30am - 9:00am MDT
Colorado Ballrooms

Attendees (3)