STEM Night at Rosa Parks Community School, Orange, NJ -

April 1, 2015                                                                       

Eleven EECO AmeriCorps Members participated at STEM Night hosted by Rosa Parks Community School part of CCE's Orange Community School Initiative (OCSI). The evening was a great success and drew crowds of several hundred 
‌community members. Activities run by EECO AmeriCorps included:


Trivia Ducks- Members had rubber ducks with numbers on the bottom. Ducks were placed in a bucket with water and each number on the bottom of the duck corresponded to a  math problem. Once a student picked a duck, the member read the math problem and if the student got the math problem correct, they won a prize.

 Feely Bag and Washy Words- Students reached their hand in a box with a hole in it. They were not able to see the object, but were only able to feel it with their hands. The  students needed to write on a piece of paper what they believed the objects were. Once they showed their guesses, the objects were revealed. If they guessed any objects correctly,  they won a prize.

 Food Coloring Fun- Using household materials like milk, food coloring, and dish soap, we created an awesome chemical reaction and a beautiful explosion of colors.

NJSOC Table - Members presented an animal based activity. Using several types of our taxidermy specimens as well as rubber  tracks, students learned about the different animals. They had fun seeing and touching the animals.



3rd Annual Community Service Fair - March 25, 2015          

March 25, 2015 was the third annual Community Service and Internship Fair, hosted by the Center for Community Engagement. EECO AmeriCorps members Courtney Moore and Robin Paoletti organized the event, which brought 37 community partners and 150 students together.

Dean Carter, Associate Dean of Student Life, offered an inspirational welcome to the community partners, and from there community partners were able to network and prepare for students to arrive. Students had the opportunity to speak with the non-profit organizations about volunteer opportunities, internships and jobs.

With help from the Bonner AmeriCorps members, the fair ran smoothly, from set-up, running the registration table, and assisting partners throughout the day. The day was a great success and there are now 150 potential volunteers for those organizations. If each of these students gives one hour, that is 150 hours of change for our community.

Katie Bisaha (pictured right) was the winner of the grand prize, a GoPro Camera and accessory package!


1st Annual MLK Day of Service - January 19, 2015 

EECO AmeriCorps members and Bonner AmeriCorps members always serve on Martin Luther King Day, but it had never been held as a campus wide event at Montclair State University until January 19, 2015. EECO AmeriCorps members Courtney Moore and Robin Paoletti the co-coordinators of the event, encountered many obstacles, but their due diligence and can do attitudes really brought the campus community together with over 235 volunteers participating in the day’s events.

Staff, students, alumni and local volunteers connected with organizations such as Canterbury Village (West Orange), Neighbor to Neighbor Network (Bloomfield), St. Ann’s Soup Kitchen (Newark), YMCA of Montclair, Boys and Girls Club of Clifton, Montclair Fire Department, and the Montclair Community Farm.

For those who stayed on campus, volunteers made sandwiches that went to Eva’s Village and Montclair Emergency Services for the Homeless (MESH), created literacy boards benefitting students in the Newark School District, designed Valentines for senior citizens and deployed soldiers, and made activity books for children that are in hospitals for extended periods of time.

The yield for the day included: 800 sandwiches, 65 activity books, 226 Valentine’s Day cards for the elderly and for deployed soldiers, 100 fire awareness kits, 200 literacy boards, making the day a little brighter for over 70 senior citizens by spending time socializing and instructing yoga.

6th Annual National Day of Service - September 13, 2014‌  

Nearly 400 Montclair State students joined with alumni, faculty and staff to participate in the National Day of Service and Remembrance on Saturday, September 13. This was the sixth year that Montclair State has participated in this 

The turnout was amazing, according to Bryan Murdock of Academic Affairs, who helped to organize the event: “We had more people volunteer than in any previous year.” 

‌Volunteers met on Saturday morning for 10 community service projects both on and off campus. On campus, volunteers created cards and a quilt for residents at Gates Manor senior living in Montclair, made sandwiches and assembled bags of food to be distributed to the hungry and painted a portion of the Montclair State community rock. 

Other volunteers went off campus to sort and pack food donations at the Community Food Bank of New Jersey, restore a meadow and harden trails at the Hilltop Reservation, work in the garden at the Montclair Historical Society, assist with an adoption booth for PAWS in Montclair and to paint murals, build picnic tables and start a reading garden at School #5 in Paterson.
Montclair State’s National Day of Service was made possible in part by the collaboration of the Volunteer Resource Center, the office of Service-Learning and Community Engagement, Alumni Relations, Center for Student Involvement, Residence Life and Community Relations. 

Murdock also expressed thanks to the community partners who helped give students the opportunity to volunteer, including Fairway Market, The NJ Commission on National and Community Service and Liberty Mutual Insurance 

Learning to Lead

Among the many exciting opportunities available to Montclair State University students is the option to join one of the college-themed living/learning communities. The communities group together students who are taking similar courses or have a common college-based major to help foster social connections among students and faculty with similar interests.

The Service-Learning and Community Engagement Program Receives $1,000 Seminar Grant from Bringing Theory to Practice, to develop a Community-Based/ Participatory Action Research Think Tank

In order to integrate its civic engagement efforts with the intentional and explicit democratic dimensions described and called for in the /Crucible Moment/, the Service-Learning and Community Engagement program in collaboration with the CUNY Graduate Center and its Public Science Project is implementing the Community-Based/Participatory Action Research Think Tank (CB/PAR).

The proposed CB/PAR Think Tank will be modeled upon the Public Science Project’s Critical Participatory Action Research Summer Institute, which is designed to introduce participants to the theory, methods, and ethics of community-based/critical participatory action research. The Think Tank is scheduled for the upcoming fall semester, will be comprised of three evening seminars, and will serve as a study/action team where participants discuss their projects while learning more about the best practices and tenets of CB/PAR.

Governor Christie announces Montclair State a recipient of AmeriCorps grant

Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno announced that 15 organizations have received new or continued AmeriCorps grant support from the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS). 

The New Jersey Commission on National and Community Service, which is located with the New Jersey Department of State's Division of Programs, will distribute the more than $2.9 million in funding to organizations selected in a highly competitive process.  Montclair State University - which runs the EECO and Bonner Leader AmeriCorps Programs - is one of them, with over $265,000 allotted in grant money.

"Civic-minded service is an essential part of the solution to many of the social challenges facing our communities," said Lt. Governor Guadagno, who oversees the Division of Programs in her dual capacity as Secretary of State. "With this support, AmeriCorps members will continue their fine work in meeting pressing local needs while strengthening the fabric of communities throughout New Jersey. In doing so, they will develop essential civic and leadership skills that will last a lifetime."

Bonner Leaders Rebuild Homes after Sandy - June 16-June 22, 2013

This year's annual summer service project took members of the Bonner Leader AmeriCorps Program to Keansburg, NJ, where seven Bonner Leaders - along with four other Red Hawks - spent a week rebuilding the house of a local resident, which had been severely damaged by Superstorm Sandy last October.

The volunteers teamed up with A Future With Hope, a local nonprofit organization that assists vulnerable or marginalized populations affected by Hurricane Sandy in rebuilding their homes.  They installed drywall and spackle in four of the home's six rooms, including a dining room, living room, bedroom, and hallway. 

"This trip is just one of the many service projects we participate in," says Bonner Leader Alexis Almeida.  "It made a great impact on everyone who took the time to help."

By the end of the week, the home had been dry-walled and spackled - and readied for the next group of volunteers to continue the lengthy process of reconstruction.  "There were times when the work was difficult and the volunteers struggled," Alexis admits, "but...the students really came out of their shells and learned firsthand how important service is.  Service trips like these inspire students to make a difference in the world, and shows that positive changes can be made."    

Sustainability in Action: Summer Service-Learning Course (ANTH414) - June 9-June 14, 2013

This June, a small group of Service-Learning students travelled for a 5-day excursion to EcoVillage, a co-housing living community in Ithaca, New York whose residents live and work sustainably to reduce their overall environmental footprint.  Residents work cooperatively to sustain a number of community gardens and organic farms in EcoVillage and support local alternative energy projects.

Students with the Service-Learning Program were given a unique opportunity to experience the successes and challenges of living and working sustainably in a co-housing community, and gained valuable field experience working on one of EcoVillage's organic farms.  They met with residents to learn about sustainable food and community building in the Ithaca area.

For more information about EcoVillage, visit

Bonner Leaders Graduate!

‌Bonner Leader Jose Miguel Rodas was one of two graduating seniors to address an audience of families and peers, at this year's College of Education and Human Services convocation ceremony on May 20, 2013.  

"In the past, we were told that if we wanted to become the person we wish to be, we needed to work hard, and stay motivated in order to confront all sorts of obstacles," Jose began.  "It is always those obstacles that will define us, how strong we can and are willing to be...."  (Read more from Jose's Convocation Speech!)

Jose was with the Bonner Leader AmeriCorps Program at MSU for three years, during which time he served an average of 10 hours a week - and 300 hours a year - at the Montclair Charles H. Bullock School and Orange High School.  He graduates with seven other Bonner Leaders this Spring.   


Challenges of Connection: Service-Learning and Community Needs

November 3, 2012 - Dr. Paula Mathieu

Dr. Mathieu is the author of Tactics of Hope: The Public Turn in English Composition (Boynton/Cook, 2005), Associate Professor of English and Director of the First-Year Writing Program, Boston College. Her talk is titled: The Challenges of Connection: Community Writing, Activism, and Bridging the University Classroom.

When: November 3, 2011, 6:15 PM

Where: Student Center, Room 419

Her visit is sponsored by the English Department Visiting Writers Committee, the First-Year Writing Program, and the Service-Learning and Community Engagement Program. She addresses the challenges of institutionally directed service-learning and meeting the needs of the "street" or community.

Service-Learning and Community Engagement Awards Program June 8, 2011

Where: Kops Lounge, Russ Hall

When: June 8, 2011 - 2:00pm - 3:30pm Open to the Public, Please RSVP!

On June 8, 2011, the Research Academy for University Learning's Service-Learning and Community Engagement Program will hold its annual awards program to honor and recognize those who have made outstanding contributions to advancing and sustaining the mission and goals of the Program. Faculty, staff, and community partners will be recognized with Outstanding Student of the Year, Outstanding Community Partner of the Year, and Outstanding Faculty member of the Year for their dedicated work and distinguished commitment to service-learning and community engagement, a critical element in creating engaged learning environments for Montclair State students.

This year, Dr. Edward Zlotkowski, co-author of Higher Education and Democracy and distinguished service-learning scholar, will present the keynote speech.

As part of the awards ceremony, we will also honor and celebrate Dr. Marybeth Henry, Ph.D., Professor, Family and Child Studies Department, who will be retiring this year. Dr. Henry has been part of the Montclair State family for over 25 years, and as co-founder of Montclair State’s service-learning program, she has dedicated a significant part of her teaching, service, and scholarship to service-learning and experiential education. By any measure, Dr. Henry’s many contributions to experiential education through her work in service-learning, cooperative education, and internships have made an enduring and indelible mark on the university, its students and the extended communities it serves.

The awards program will be held in Kops Lounge in Russ Hall, between 2:00pm - 3:30pm. A reception for Dr. Henry will be held following the program. To RSVP, please contact Bryan Murdock at: or 973.655.6831.

Medicare Under the Knife: A Panel Discussion on Medicare Reform

When: Monday, May 2, 2011 1:00-2:30PM

Where: Montclair State University, 1 Normal Ave University Hall, 7th Floor Conference Center

What: Panel Discussion by Montclair State Students and Pine Ridge of Montclair Senior Citizens

Free and open to students and the public! | Refreshments immediately following the event

Panel Presentations Include:

Proposed Changes to Medicare: Effects on people under age 55 - Anna Waller, Montclair State University

Combatting Medicare fraud: One person at a time - Joe Felipe, Montclair State University - Sharon Sandusky, Pine Ridge of Montclair & host, News & Views Local Access TV 34

Institutional fraud: New solutions versus improved enforcement - Kristen Menaldo, Montclair State University - Adele Vick, Pine Ridge of Montclair

Balancing the budget: Making healthcare affordable for seniors - Jonathan Feuer, Montclair State University - Mary Martin, Pine Ridge of Montclair

Q&A Following Panel Discussion