Doing Better at Doing Good

Course type: Community Based Learning. As a part of this course, students will actively serve with a nonprofit agency or school in the DC area to apply their course knowledge.

This course examines the conversation on poverty in Washington, DC through scholarship, research, and community-based service-learning with an afterschool program. Horton’s Kids is a local nonprofit that serves families in Ward 8’s Wellington Park neighborhood, where the average household income is below $10,000 a year. Students discover how Horton’s Kids has evolved since 1989 using a comprehensive service model to address the cyclical needs of the community and adopting more inclusive practices. Students connect their work in the community to their work in the classroom by researching, writing, and reflecting on poverty in this neighborhood. Students learn how to reimagine service, focusing on reciprocity and equity. Readings cover a range of perspectives, from historians, sociologists, psychologists, public health scholars and professionals, service-learning and social justice scholars, community partners, community members, nonprofit professionals, policy makers, contemporary public intellectuals, and cultural critics.

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