Case Studies & Applied Research
Prior research indicates that Living-Learning Communities (LLC's) can help promote college students' community engagement. This applied research, a mixed-methods program evaluation, investigated the extent to which an LLC situated in a mid-Atlantic former steel town enhanced college students' community engagement and feelings of attachment to the community. The evaluation involved interviewing and surveying current and past students from the LLC as well as community neighbors living near the LLC. Results indicated that students increased their feelings of connectedness to the community and neighbors expressed a desire for long-term engagement with City House. The program evaluation suggested multiple contributors to student-community engagement; specifically, the role of a) proximity in maximizing student interactions with diverse others, b) shared vision between students and community members, c) academic preparedness for students' civic engagement, d) informal community interactions. While student time management can be a concern, the program evaluation supported the role of LLCs in reducing students' disengagement within communities.
Wilsey, S. A., Welty, A. M., & Whelpley, W. V. (2017). Community Engagement in a Former Steel Town: The Role of a Living-Learning Community. PRISM: A Journal of Regional Engagement, 6 (1). Retrieved from https://encompass.eku.edu/prism/vol6/iss1/3