Community engaged learning courses and programs | Mount Allison


A minor in community engaged learning combines practical experience with critical pedagogies.

See the Academic Calendar for specific course requirements or Connect for class times.


2022-23 CENL course offerings

Fall 2022

Note: All courses are worth 3 credits.

CENL/RELG 1001: Compassionate Communities
Dr. Leslie Shumka

What does a compassionate community look like and could it become a model for addressing social injustices such as the poverty, housing insecurity, and loneliness in our midst? We’ll discuss how understanding compassion more fully and using it as a driver of social action we are able to transform our communities for the benefit of all members. No prereq.

CENL 1991C: Community and Social Change
Dr. Leslie Shumka

Are you looking to make a difference in your community when it comes to addressing social change, but are not sure where to start? Armed with knowledge garnered from years of experience and research, an enthusiastic group of faculty members will introduce you to the conceptual tools that are crucial for community organizing and volunteer work. No prereq.

CENL 2101: Introduction to Community Engaged Learning
Dr. Leslie Shumka

What does it mean to ‘blow out the walls of your classroom’? In this course, it means that you are introduced to the field of community engaged learning through an immersive experience in Sackville or a nearby community. This type of place-based learning involves project work, often in a community school, and helps you develop a skill-set with practical applications beyond community engagement. See calendar for prereq.

RELG/CENL 3991A: Religion, Community Identity
Dr. A. Wilson

This course draws on the wealth of religious thought and tradition to consider the complex connections between contemporary identity, relationship and community.  Central questions for consideration will include what makes a healthy community? How does individual identity relate to community identity? What freedoms, expectations and obligations does living in community bring? And ultimately, to what extent can religion continue to provide guidance in a secular society? See calendar for prereq.

Winter 2023

Note: All courses are worth 3 credits.

CENL 1991: Education, Mentorship and Athletics
Dr. Leslie Shumka

This introduction to community engaged learning is well suited to individuals who already volunteer as coaches and mentors, or those who are considering careers in recreation administration and education. If you’d like to take your learning into a community school on a weekly basis then this might be the experience you are looking for. No prereq.

CENL 2001: Community Narratives
Dr. Leslie Shumka

Story-telling has always served as a powerful medium for community groups and institutions as they construct a sense of identity, create awareness of social concerns relevant to them, and encourage members to help solve pressing social issues. We examine storytelling as it pertains to rural communities like Sackville, identify the most effective narratives for a digital age, and identify the tools used to create and tell these stories (e.g., university archives, natural and historical landmarks, our local heritage society, and more). No prereq.

CENL 4001: Advanced Studies in CENL
Dr. Mike Fox

This course will focus on the major research and action-based approaches to the concept of “The Connected Community”, including leading international authors and their work. At the same time, students will be able to draw upon their own local community learning experiences in developing a deeper understanding of the health, wealth and power of engagement at the local level through the development of a particular case-study experience of their own design. Prereq: Take 3 credits from RELG/CENL 1001, CENL 2001; CENL 2101; CENL 3101; or Permission of the department.