Dates: Thursday-Friday, August 9-10, 2018
Location: American University in Washington, DC
Conference Focus: The intended community for this colloquium includes all who are interested in current and potential partnerships among academic librarians, faculty who teach service learning courses, service learning professionals, and community partners. The colloquium is designed to facilitate the sharing of research, ideas, perspectives and best practices in library engagement with/in academic service learning.
Registration for the conference is now open!
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Mark Bergel
The story of Dr. Mark Bergel’s founding of A Wider Circle is, in part, a story of building bridges between campus and community. In 2001, Dr. Bergel, then teaching at American University, volunteered along with his students to deliver food to families living in need in our nation’s capital region. He found himself in apartment after apartment where there were no beds, no dressers, and no living room or dining room furniture at all. He saw that the families living in these apartments had no access to the information, resources, and support readily available to others throughout our communities. As a result, Dr. Bergel’s entire life changed profoundly. With no seed money, but a strong conviction that we could do better for those living in poverty, he converted his living room into a nonprofit office and founded A Wider Circle.
That bridge - from campus to community – remains intact. Members of the AU Community routinely volunteer and intern with A Wider Circle, and the values of community-based learning are reflected in a Wider Circle’s mission: to end poverty by inspiring, fostering, and measuring individual and community level change.
As librarians gather for the 2018 Colloquium on Libraries and Service Learning, Dr. Bergel’s keynote will serve as an inspirational call, reminding us that we have a role to play in connecting our campus communities with the broader communities where we live and work.