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Students Leading Engagement Activities

President Alger has entrusted funds to the Faculty Senate to further the university vision. As part of this effort, the Faculty Senate and Student Government Association (SGA) are partnering to offer the opportunity for students to apply for mini-grants (up to $5,000) to fund engagement projects.

Mini-grant funds may be used to support an existing engagement project or for new engagement initiatives. Learn more about 2019-2020 mini grant eligibility, timeline and application process here. The application period opens October 8th, 2019 and closes on October 20th, 2019. 



The vision statement for JMU is “To be the national model for the engaged university: engaged with ideas and the world.”

At JMU, engagement takes three forms:

  1. Engaged Learning —Developing deep, purposeful and reflective learning, through classroom, campus, and community experiences in the pursuit, creation, application and dissemination of knowledge.
  2. Civic Engagement —Advancing the legacy of James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, by preparing individuals to be active and responsible participants in a representative democracy dedicated to the common good.
  3. Community Engagement —Fostering mutually beneficial and reciprocal partnerships, ranging from local to global, that connect learning to practice, address critical societal problems, and improve quality of life.



Read an update from the 18-19 recipients in Spring '19 #EngagedJMU newsletter and The Breeze.


JMU Student Engagement Mini-Grant Recipients for 2018-2019:

Matthew Ashley - Children of Milagros

Allison Brandmark - Stone Spring Garden Project

Sarah Brock - Real Women in STEM

Shane Chambers (with Michael Pamonag and Jeremy Asher Bravo Narula) - Improving the standard of living at the Salvation Army Shelter in Harrisonburg

Austin Evans - Quest for Questioners

Emma Laney - JMU at Education and Hope

Carlie Louine Madsen - LSVT Loud Project

Caroline Whitlow - The Teal Meal



Past Recipients

JMU Student Engagement Mini-Grant Recipients for 2017-2018:

Kathia Bonilla - Art Therapy Initiative

Livvy Call - A Fully Conscious Meal 

Livvy developed the idea and led the effort to host Cultivating Community: A Local, Conscious Meal at the Harrisonburg Turner Pavilion on April 6, 2018. The meal was provided free to attendees and featured only ingredients from local farmers/producers, local speakers and a band. Over 120 people attended from all over Harrisonburg and the Shenandoah Valley, and included many community members. Overall, the event was a smashing success that received praise and publicity in the local community!

Laura Goldstein - Women and Gender Studies Camp

Laura designed programming and directed an all-day camp for local middle school girls to learn more about women’s and gender studies, empowerment, combatting interpersonal violence and toxic masculinity. The camp included guest speakers and educational activities to help re-channel the harsh influence media and society have on young children.

Stephanie Pasewaldt - Uganda and Sanitation

Danika Pfeiffer - Preschool Reading Program

JMU graduate speech-language pathology and occupational therapy students implemented emergent writing activities in two local preschools. The small-group interventions took place twice a week, with each group of preschoolers participating in 10 days of 30-minute activities.  Based on pre- and post- assessments, all preschoolers demonstrated improvement in at least one of the following areas: writing letters, writing their name, writing words.  In addition, data from focus groups and interviews conducted with the graduate students over the course of the study show that those working in interprofessional pairs gained a greater understanding of interprofessional collaboration.

Caitlyn Robertson - Public Event on Immigration, Refugees, and Diversity in Harrisonburg

Caleigh Strother - Music Program at the CCCA

Autumn Waish - Community Criminal Justice Days Conference Seminars

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