The benefits of Community Engagement

Posted by Peter MUIR

At DC, we frame Community Engagement in the MYP and CAS in the DP as ‘personal and social development programmes’.  As I have said to parents and students many times, developing and executing a well-thought out plan in either of these programmes offers our students a number of benefits.   Not only do students have the opportunity to help out others in the community, they also have the opportunity gain many personal benefits.  Those benefits include developing the skills and attributes highlighted by company CEOs, universities, employers and educators as key to future success.  A recent post on this blog outlined how participation in Community Engagement can also reduce student stress.  In the video above Youth Service America explains how one form of Community Engagement – service learning – offers students the opportunity to develop what the US’s National Education Association (NEA) refer to as the Four Cs – critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity.   It is these four skills that make up much of what is required for future success, and it is development of these four skills that is one aspect of what Community Engagement has to offer our students.