Learn and Serve America:
Higher Education

[Photo:  Learn and Serve workers] This grants program supports college students in service-learning programs organized by institutions of higher education and nonprofit organizations.

What are examples of Higher Education
Service-learning programs?

Service learning programs involve students in organized community service that addresses local needs, while developing their academic skills, their sense of civic responsibility, and their commitment to the community.

[Photo:  Learn and Serve worker in clinic setting.] For example, as part of a public policy course on school reform, college students might work with teachers at a local school to develop service-learning curricula appropriate for K-12 students. Or to meet a clinical requirement, nursing students might help operate a community health center serving low-income people. In connection with a weekly seminar on environmental issues, students might help local residents reduce toxins in their homes.

What kinds of organizations are eligible to apply
for Learn and Serve America funds?

Institutions of higher education, consortia of institutions of higher education, nonprofit organizations, and public agencies working in partnership with colleges and universities are eligible to apply for Learn and Serve America: Higher Education funds.

How may funds be spent?

Grants may be used to cover the costs of program staff, participant support, recruitment, placement, training, and limited amounts of equipment and administrative costs. Institutions and organizations that sponsor programs must match Corporation grants in cash or in kind, dollar for dollar.

How are Learn and Serve America programs
selected and funded?

Programs are selected and funded directly by the Corporation through a national competition. The Corporation awards one-year grants, with renewal funding contingent upon program performance and availability of appropriations.

What do successful proposals have in common?

Successful applicants demonstrate clear understanding of how a program benefits communities while enhancing students' academic and civic education. Ideal programs allow students and community members to participate fully in their design and implementation. They also focus on a specific area of community need and specify how results will be demonstrated.

How do higher education institutions apply?

Applications are available from the Corporation. Call (202) 606-5000 ext. 117 for information on the application deadline.

Return to Corporation for National Service homepage.