Certificate & Courses

Community Engagement for the Public Good | Undergraduate Certificate

CCESL offers a 12-credit undergraduate certificate that equips students with the skills, knowledge, and commitments to collaborate with communities for the public good. Students will learn the foundations of community-engaged methods and develop an action plan through CCESL's course sequence, described below. Throughout six credits of independent study and/or community-engaged coursework, students will receive the mentoring to effectively carry out community-engaged work based on their personal action plan and reflect on their work through an ePortfolio (website). Students may take the course sequence below without pursuing the certificate.

Learn more about the certificate pathway:

View Pathway

 

 

There are two ways to add the certificate to your studies:

  1. Fill out the form below and return it to the Office of the Register, located on the garden level of University Hall. Please note that a signature is not required when adding a certificate.
    • To fill out the form, first complete the top section (name, ID number, current degree, and current major(s)/minor(s)). Then, underneath the "Add or Drop a Minor or Certificate" section, write, “Community Engagement for the Public Good” for the certificate name, and input the date.
Additional Certificate Details

2. Meet with CCESL Executive Director, Cara DiEnno, who will then submit the form via email on your behalf. Reach out to Cara (Cara.DiEnno@du.edu) with any questions or if you'd like to setup a time to meet to complete the certificate form.

Add/Drop Undergraduate Form

CCESL Course Sequence

CCESL offers a three-course sequence of two-credit courses designed to help students develop a set of public skills and civic knowledge base that will allow them to actively participate in their communities. Students may take the course sequence below without pursuing the Community Engagement for the Public Good Certificate.

Specifically, the sequence of courses will help students:

  1. Understand critical policy issues and salient community problems within the Denver metro area.
  2. Develop a set of public skills that will allow them to actively and skillfully participate in the public life of their communities.

These courses strongly encourage students of diverse backgrounds, politics and values to learn together, and from one another, in a safe and challenging learning environment.

man with backpack in alleyway

CENG 2510 Denver Urban Issues and Policy | 2 Credits

This course is part of the Center for Community Engagement to advance Scholarship and Learning (CCESL)’s course series, which equips students with the skills, knowledge, and commitments necessary to collaborate with communities for the public good.

As members of the Denver community, we have the responsibility and right to investigate important issues and co-create solutions that center equity and inclusion. There is a wide array of actions that can be taken to create social change, depending on what the issue demands and the strengths, skills, and talents of those working for change. The aim of this course is three-fold. First, you will learn how the history of Denver, including how legacies of violence, displacement, forced migration, and resettlement of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities, have shaped the issues we see today. Second, the course will introduce you to some of the most critical issues facing Denver and local efforts to address those issues. Lastly, the course will provide the space for you to explore the variety of social change actions that can be taken, weighing the pros and cons of each and considering how to assess fit for the issue(s) you care about and your own strengths.

people and community organizing

CENG 2520 Community Organizing | 2 Credits

This course is part of the Center for Community Engagement to advance Scholarship and Learning (CCESL)’s course series, which equips students with the skills, knowledge, and commitments necessary to collaborate with communities for the public good.

In this course, you will learn about the history of community organizing in the United States, the role of community organizing in contemporary social movements, and the components of the community organizing process. Students will first learn how to critically examine power, privilege, oppression, and white supremacy in the context of working for social change. Then, you will explore various community organizing practices including identifying self-interests; building relationships; defining issues using an anti-oppression analysis; understanding root causes; centering the experience of the communities most impacted by injustice and systemic oppression; and creating a vision, strategies, tactics to support campaigns for social justice.

people marching

CENG 2590 From Public Good Theory to Action | 2 Credits

This course is part of the Center for Community Engagement to advance Scholarship and Learning (CCESL)’s course series, which equips students with the skills, knowledge, and commitments necessary to collaborate with communities for the public good.

Through this course, you will integrate your personal, professional, and academic goals with a focus on social change. In doing so, you will gain a clear sense of your identity as a public good scholar as well as a personal action plan that you can implement to address a social justice issue of your choosing. You will apply an anti-oppression analysis to your plan including how the I’s of Oppression manifest in your selected topic, ways you center the knowledge/voices of the communities most impacted by the injustice/systemic oppression, and how white supremacy shows up in your issue and how to actively work to address racist and oppressive practices.

After reflecting on this course, I believe it was one of the most influential courses I've taken at DU. Denver Urban Issues and Policy directly relates to my job post-graduation and the work I hope to do in my future. Prior to this class, I did not understand civic health, mutual aid, redlining, community in policymaking, community wealth building, and forms of community-based media. I now look forward to applying this knowledge when working on an affordable housing project and developing art in the community.
Student in Denver Urban Issues and Policy Class

Independent Study, Internships, & Special Topics

person writing on paper

Public Good Pathways Independent Study | CENG 3991

The Public Good Pathways Independent Study provides academic credit for reflection, integration, and synthesis of a student’s current and previous work that contributes to the University of Denver’s public good vision. This work is overseen by the Center for Community Engagement to advance Scholarship and Learning (CCESL) and may be completed in collaboration with one or more community partner(s). Public Good Pathways Independent Study opportunities are individually designed as experiences for students who have completed at least one community-engaged class, and they require approval from the Executive Director of CCESL.

multiple people milling up and down stone stairs

Community Engagement Internship | CENG 3980

Students who complete a special project as part of an internship with a community organization can register for 1-8 Community Engagement Internship credits. 

During Winter and Spring 2024 a special internship opportunity will be offered by the office for Public Good Strategy & Research: What Are the Costs of Campus Sexual Assault? | CENG 3980. Students will collaborate with faculty and community partners to address the economic cost of campus sexual assault. To learn more about the internship or receive registration approval, reach out to Dr. Anne DePrince below.

Contact Anne
cupped hands holding dirt and a plant

Topics in Community Engagement | CENG 1700/2700

During some quarters, special topics in community engagement are offered. Check back at the beginning of each quarter to see upcoming courses.

For Winter 2024, the course below will be offered by the Center for Sustainability. To learn more, check out the course catalog on MyDU. 

Leveraging Eco-Distress to Create a Regenerative Future |CENG 1700/2700

This special topics course explores the imperative of addressing global environmental change through co-creating a future that is equitable, just, joyful, and based on mutually beneficial relationships with other humans, all other species, and the natural world. Students will develop knowledge of how global environmental change and the polycrisis impact our thoughts, emotions, and behavior, and will learn skills to support them in their ability to take intentional action in the creation of a regenerative future for all beings and the Earth. 

Email Questions

During the process of taking this course, I’ve developed a greater understanding that true progress not only takes time, but it’s also usually not linear. Rather than setting expectations for results, I’ve learned the importance of valuing every part of the process, from start to finish, and taking unexpected outcomes as opportunities to improve rather than viewing them as failure. This knowledge not only applies to social work, but I have been able to apply these themes to “my day-to-day life.

Student in Community Organizing Class
group of students sitting on grass in front of the capitol

Contact

Note: All CCESL programs, including this one, undergo an antiracist, anti-oppression review at least annually. This year, changes were made to program materials and applications based on that review.