Student Development
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A. J. Gordon Fellows Community Asset Projects

The Campus Community Asset Projects (CAPs) which A. J. Gordon Fellows develop are designed to explore asset-based thinking and collaboration in the context of a small community—in this case, our campus community.

Individually or in teams, A. J. Gordon Fellows choose a campus-based community project based on shared interests or established needs. Each project is linked to the theory and practice of asset-based thinking and community development. Fellows are encouraged to build community partnerships and influence the community experience of their fellow citizens. Lifelong leadership is about one's influence with others, among others, and on behalf of others, and these projects are a shared vision for fulfilling the goal of learning to lead, which is emphasized in the A. J. Gordon Fellows program.

Participants are exposed to the dynamics of complex social and community issues and resources. They have a chance to take an active role in leading with understanding, and to learn the practices of project development and management, teamwork, collaboration, community networking and advocacy. Projects are a practical learning experience and a means to return service to the campus community.


Some Projects since 2010

Gordon College Composting Program

A partnership between Gordon's Advocates for Sustainable Futures, Gordon College Physical Plant, and Residence Life to introduce campus apartment-dwellers in Bromley Hall and Tavilla Hall to an organic waste composting system which reduces campus waste costs and benefits the Gordon Garden.

Broadcast Media Group > ScotRadio

Explored aspects of developing campus broadcast media formats (radio, video, internet) as an extension of Christian presence in media. This group seeded what sprouted as Gordon's first internet radio—ScotRadio—with an active and enthusiastic student government-sponsored agency.

Give-and-Take Initiative > The Common Exchange

Designed and launched a campus community give-and-take swap store to encourage reuse of clothing and other items among students, faculty and staff. The idea was formalized as The Common Exchange and is now operating in Ferrin Hall, underwritten by student government as a GCSA agency.

The Princemere Academic Journal

Gordon College's undergraduate journal of student research and scholarly writing was seeded by an A. J. Gordon Fellow and a Dean, and brought to life with the help of a team of Fellows. The journal, and an accompanying Undergraduate Research Council (which supports student scholars and their presentations at regional and national conferences), are now supported by the student government's Academic Affairs Council.

Other projects have included:

  • a Church Finder Database to help students find local churches to attend
  • a Trade Fairly Initiative now adopted by the Human Network (which itself was birthed by a Fellows CAP project, as was the Human Network's annual Human Rights Week program)
  • the Advocates for Sustainable Futures Council
  • the Smooth Health Initiative (nutritional awareness and advocacy)
  • a campus wildlife project
  • several educational events to better understand other faith traditions (Jewish, Catholic, Orthodox).

More projects are imagined each year.


Foundations for CAP projects

The learning process for these projects has six goals which provide anchors for imagination and success. We hope projects will

Be informed by scholarship
Be guided by experience
Be shared with community partners
Be firmly targeted and appropriately scaled
Be creatively promoted and humbly held
Be built to last