The Honors Forum holds that all Honors students should use their talents to contribute to campus and/or community life. A Citizenship Project will give you the opportunity to pursue an interest outside of the classroom or as an extension of a classroom experience and to involve a larger community within or beyond Skidmore College. We define community broadly to include the Skidmore College community, the Saratoga Springs community, and the global community. Your project should be both process- and product- oriented, as well as intellectually rigorous; it will require initiative, planning, organization, leadership, and personal reflection. The Citizenship Project should stretch you creatively and intellectually beyond the scope of a normal academic or extracurricular undertaking; view this as an opportunity to pursue your passion.Citizenship Project Examples (click here)
The Citizenship Committee consists of volunteers drawn from faculty, staff, and students from the Honors Forum. The Committee assists students with the development of their projects and evaluates project proposals and final reports. If you would like to join the Citizenship Committee, please contact the Committee chair.
Jennifer Brown, '13 (Co-Chair)
Requirements for completing your Citizenship Project:
1. Deadline: In general, proposals may be submitted at any time during the academic year. The committee aspires to responding within two weeks of submission. Juniors must submit proposals no later than Saturday of the 3rd Week of Classes of the spring semester. Projects must be completed by the end of the junior year.
2. Proposal. Submit a project proposal for approximately 15 hours of effort (excluding the time taken to write the proposal and final project report). The Citizenship Committee must approve your project in order for it to count toward the Citizenship Requirement. The Committee may ask for revisions before approving your proposal. The Committee welcomes consultation as you prepare your proposal. The Committee will not approve proposals for projects that have already been completed. Project application form, click here.
3. Faculty Sponsor. Because we are looking for intellectually rigorous Citizenship Projects, we require you to have a trusted faculty member evaluate your proposal before you submit it to the Committee. You and your faculty member can review the project criteria found here. Click here for the faculty sponsorship form.
4. Participants. Students may work as individuals or in groups to complete a project. Each member should complete at least 15 hours of work on the project; for a three-person group, a total of 45 hours is expected. If you choose to work in a group, you may submit one proposal and one final report. Both should detail the specific contributions and time given to the project by each member. Credit may not be awarded to each participant if his or her role is not articulated.
5. Extensions. In extenuating circumstances, the Citizenship Committee will grant extensions on deadlines for projects. Study abroad is not grounds for an extension because many HF members have successfully completed projects while studying abroad. If you are planning on going abroad and would like to complete a citizenship project when you return, you must submit a proposal before you leave. To petition for an extension, email the Chair of the Committee with your reasons for needing such an extension.
6. Project Assistance. Do you want to complete your citizenship project this semester, but don't know what to do? Are you a student who realized second semester of junior year that you must complete a project or lose your student HF designation? The Citizenship Committee is here to help! The Committee holds office hours each semester for student wanting to talk about their citizenship projects. We help brainstorm possible projects, finalize ideas, point out potential problems, and help students find others for group projects. Another great resource is Michelle Hubbs, Director of Community Service. Her office on the 2nd floor of Case Center.
7. Can ongoing volunteer projects count toward the requirement? There are many wonderful community programs already in place (Saratoga Reads! for instance). It is acceptable to work with a previously established program or organization only if you take on a leadership role and clearly specify in your proposal how your project moves you beyond what you are already accomplishing in this ongoing community project.
8. Can I do my project when school is not in session? Completing a citizenship project over the summer or winter break is allowed, provided that you submit a proposal the semester before the break.
9. Project Report. The project is a summary and analysis of your Citizenship Project. Groups that work together can submit one project report. Reports must be submitted by the end of the academic year in which the project was completed. Submit your project report online: CLICK HERE.
The Committee expects high standards of writing. We will be happy to assist you if you are experiencing difficulty. The Committee also recommends the Writing Center as a resource.
Things to consider when designing your project:
1. Community Benefit. Your project must benefit a group or community, inside or outside Skidmore College. Any events or services you offer must be not-for-profit. What does your project benefit? Why is this an important addition to the Skidmore, Saratoga Springs, or global community?
2. Intellectual Rigor. Your project should challenge you to reflect, think critically, and demonstrate initiative; you will also want to challenge or inspire the intended audience. Is the community need defined with reference to academic scholarship? Ase you demonstrating an academic understanding of the issue? Do you provide any research evidence that supports this kind of project? Is there evidence that this approach will be effective?
3. Hours. Your project should involve at least 15 hours of work, including planning, preparation, and execution. The time to write your proposal and project report is not included in the 15 hours.
4. Clubs and Organizations. You may use a student club or organization as a platform from which to launch your project, but you must extend your endeavors beyond the normal duties of a member. Simply acting as a club officer or an SGA senator, for example, will not suffice.
5. Group Projects. Consider a project that involves working with one or more fellow HF members. Such projects often prove to be the most fun and fruitful. The Citizenship Committee can help you find like-minded students, if you wish.
6. Academic Credit. Though your project cannot receive academic credit, it may relate to a course. In fact, expanding upon coursework may help you get the most out of the experience.
7. Financial Support. Should your project require a budget, you can apply to the Dean of Studies for Student Opportunity Funds. The Honors Forum has limited funds available to students completing Citizenship Projects, but funding is not automatic; you can apply for funding when you submit your proposal (with this form).
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