Welcome Week Service Project | Showcase of Community Opportunities | 
Global Service Fair
Hurricane Sandy Relief | Southern Tier Flood Relief | Community Issues Forums | Day of Caring | CHOW Walk | 2012 Presidential Election | Speed Dating for ServicePeru Service-Learning and Language Immersion Program 
 
The Center for Civic Engagement strives to connect campus and community via events, programs and initiatives that facilitate deep, critical thinking, reflection, and most importantly action. Below is a sampling of some efforts we have carried out these past three years (CCE was founded in 2010). In some cases,we have provided links to archived website pages, which have been preserved since the time they were in use (e.g. Hurricane Sandy Relief, Political Engagement). In other cases, events and programs have been summarized with links included to their respective promotional materials. If you have any questions regarding a past initiative or program, or you would like more information, reach us by email at cce@binghamton.edu.

Welcome Week Service Project

August 25-27, 2014

The Welcome Week Service Project was a pilot program which sought to strengthen the campus culture and University's commitment to service and community engagement. It aimed to prepare students for purposeful living while impacting the local community and expanding University-community collaboration. 61 incoming freshmen signed up for the program, which involved arriving at campus a few days early and participating in one of four service projects planned across the city of Binghamton. The service projects included painting a series of four murals at the Binghamton Zoo at Ross Park, painting a mural at the Ann G. McGuinness Elementary School, assisting with upkeep of the outdoor Story Garden at the Discover Center of the Southern Tier, and working at Binghamton University Acres Farm, a pesticide-free farm that grows all-natural vegetables and is maintained entirely by students and volunteers.


Showcase of Community Opportunities

showcase poster2010-present
The Annual Showcase of Community Opportunities provides students with the opportunity to connect with faculty, staff, community organizations and student groups to find out what they are working on, form important partnerships and promote engagement and outreach among students. The most recent showcase featured over 60 community organizations, student groups, academic departments and campus programs working to strengthen the relationship between the University and the greater community. 
 

Global Service Fair

2013-present
global service fair posterBinghamton University's Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) hosts an annual Global Service Fair with students, faculty, staff, and community organization representatives in attendance. The Global Service Fair provides a chance for students to get connected with groups/projects that support or engage in global service. Students learn about global fundraising initiatives that happen here in Binghamton, international service trips, and many other global service opportunities! 

 Hurricane Sandy Relief

The Center for Civic Engagement Hurricane Sandy 2012 Website
Millions were affected by Hurricane Sandy all over the northeast. The CCE's Hurricane Sandy 2012 website provided information and guidance on how to plan a drive or run a fundraiser, upcoming events and opportunities to get involved, and information on how/where to make financial and other donations. 

 Southern Tier Flood Relief

The Center for Civic Engagement Flood Fact Sheet (.pdf, 430KB)
On September 7, 2011, a devastating flood hit the greater Binghamton area, displacing tens of thousands of families, and severely damaging thousands of homes, nonprofit buildings, businesses, and public properties. The new Binghamton University Downtown Center was one of the structures that suffered extensive damage. Fortunately, due to community preparedness and quick action, no lives were lost.
 
Events Center ShelterBinghamton University was integral to the success of the immediate emergency response, as well as the long term flood recovery. As flood waters rose, emergency shelters were established to house the thousands of people evacuated from their homes. The largest group of displaced residents (about two thousand) was housed in the Binghamton University Events Center and West Gym. In conjunction with others, the Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) took immediate action to coordinate the University's disaster response efforts.
 
Amidst intense community-wide distress, the CCE was able to serve as the main hub for up-to-date information, student guidance, and community connections related to the flood. See the presentation below for a description of how the Center for Civic Engagement carried out its charge to lead Binghamton University's response to the catastrophic flood through strong relationships forged between the University and its community.
 
hell-and-back-again-poster
Hell And Back Again
September 22, 2011
 
The Center for Civic Engagement teamed up with the non-profit organization React to Film to host a pre-release screening of the documentary Hell and Back Again at 6 p.m. on  Thursday, Sept. 22. The documentary follows Sgt. Nathan Harris through his transition from battle in Afghanistan to readjusting to life back at home in North Carolina. Students, faculty, staff, and community members came to the Hinman Commons to watch the film, viewed a question-and-answer session with director Danfung Dennis, and had a meaningful follow-up discussion, and found out how to take action to help soldiers, veterans, and Afghan children affected by the conflict. 
 
miss-representation-posterMiss Representation
Discussion: October 13 & 14, 2011
Film Screening: October 17, 2011
 
The Center for Civic Engagement and non-profit organization React to Film hosted a screening of Miss Representation at 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 17, in Old Union Hall. The documentary focuses on the most persuasive and pervasive force of communication in our culture -- media -- and the ways in which it is educating a generation to believe that a woman's primary value lays in her youth, beauty and sexuality, rather than in her capacity as a leader and an intellectual. The screening was followed by a meaningful discussion on the film and on what we can do to take action and make a difference. The event was co-sponsored by the Women's Department, Psychology Department, Women's Student Union, Voices Against Violence and Women in Business.
 
food-day-flyerFood, Inc.
October 21, 2011
 
In Food, Inc., filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that has been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government's regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, herbicide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of E. coli—the harmful bacteria that causes illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually. We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults.
 
sing your song flyerSing Your Song
February 13, 2012
 
The Center for Civic Engagement hosted a screening of Sing Your Song, a documentary that follows the life of Harry Belafonte as a heroic cultural and political figure of the past 60 years, at 7 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 13, in Old Union Hall. The documentary focuses on his social justice work globally and during the U.S. Civil Rights movement. The screening was followed by a recorded question- and-answer session between Belafonte and the president of REACT to FILM, as well as an open discussion. Faculty, staff, students and community members attended and discussed this important film. The event was co-sponsored by the Center for Civic Engagement, REACT to FILM, UNICEF@BU, Amnesty International, Sigma Alpha Lambda and the Hillside Community.
 
tsunami flyerThe Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom
March 12, 2012
 
At 7 p.m. Monday, on March 12, in Old Union Hall, the Binghamton Center for Civic Engagement and national non-profit organization REACT to FILM hosted a free screening of “The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom,” a 2012 Academy Award-nominated documentary that follows survivors in the areas hardest hit by Japan's recent tsunami as they find the courage to revive and rebuild. Professors Herbert Bix, David Stahl, and Roberta Strippoli spoke after the film as part of a follow-up discussion about the issues Japan has faced and what can still be done to help. The event was co-sponsored by Sigma Alpha Lambda, the Student United Way, Asian Outlook Magazine, and the Institute for Asia and Asian Diasporas. Faculty, staff, students, and community members are welcome to attend and discuss this important issue.
 
beyond belief flyerBeyond Belief
March 8, 2012 
 
Beyond Belief is the story of two soccer moms from the Boston suburbs who have lost their husbands in the 9/11 attacks. In response, they dedicate themselves to empowering Afghan widows whose lives have been ravaged by decades of war, poverty and oppression — factors they consider to be causes of terrorism.
 
beyond-kony-flyerBeyond Kony
April 12, 2012
 
The Center for Civic Engagement hosted a Community Issues Forum, "Beyond Kony 2012" at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 12, in LH-10, about Invisible Children's Kony 2012 campaign. In mid-2012 "Kony 2012" had gone viral, stirring up much debate worldwide (80,000,000+ views on YouTube and hundreds of articles, blog posts, and response videos). The aim of this community issues forum was to go beyond the "Kony 2012" campaign by situating the video in its appropriate social, political and historical contexts. It provided students, faculty, staff and community members with an opportunity to openly discuss their views in a safe, comfortable setting. Actions steps beyond those proposed by Invisible Children were also be discussed. This event was co-sponsored by the Indian International Student Union, UNICEF @ BU, Sigma Alpha Lambda, B.L.A.C.K. Unity and the Office of International Programs. Featured speakers included Professor Michael West, Professor William Martin and Adjunct Professor Virginia Brown. 
 
living for 32 flyerLiving for 32
April 16, 2012
 
At 8 p.m. on Monday, April 16, in Old Union Hall, The Center for Civic Engagement and REACT to FILM held a free screening of the film "Living for 32" to remember the 32 people whose lives were lost at Virginia Tech five years ago and to drive critical discussion around the issue of gun violence. "Living for 32" is the inspirational story of Colin Goddard, a survivor of the tragic shooting massacre that occurred on the Virginia Tech campus on April 16, 2007. The screening was followed by an interactive livestream Q&A with Goddard and film producer Maria Cuomo Cole, as well as a nationwide candlelight vigil in which Binghamton participated. Faculty, staff, students, and community members were invited to participate in this free event. The screening was co-sponsored by Sigma Alpha Lambda, the Secular Students Alliance, and Peace OUTside Campus.
 
solar mamas flyerSolar Mamas
March 19, 2013
 
Rafea—a 30 year old Jordanian mother of four—is traveling outside her village for the first time to attend a solar engineering program at India's Barefoot College. She will join women like her from Guatemala, Kenya, Burkina Faso, and Colombia to learn concrete skills that have the potential to change their communities. If Rafea and the other women succeed, they will be able to electrify their villages, train more engineers, and provide for their families. But at what cost? After the film, there was a discussion facilitated by Assistant Professor of Anthropology, Joshua Reno, who has done extensive research on the controversies surrounding the use of modern technology to solve problems ranging from waste and climate change to disability and energy insecurity. Faculty, staff, and students were invited to come and get informed, discuss, and take action!
 
bone marrow donor flyerMore To Live For
April 17, 2013
 
This film chronicles the life and struggle of legendary saxophonist, Michael Brecker, whose search for a compatible, life-saving, bone marrow donor was ultimately unsuccessful. Brecker passed tragically in 2007 after a hard-fought battle with leukemia. Since the film was first shown, thousands of people have signed up for the International Bone Marrow Donor Registry, each of them a potential life saver. Faculty, staff, and students were invited to watch the film and sign up as a bone marrow donor by having their mouths swabbed.
 
poverty forum flyerBecome a Leader in the Fight Against Poverty
November 6, 2013
 
In conjunction with Dr. David Campbell of the College of Community and Public Affairs, the CCE sponsored a panel discussion that was meant to educate the community about what is being done to ease the pain of poverty in our region. Panelists Larry Parham (Citizen Action), Debbie Thorpe (All Saints Episcopal Church), and Alan Thornton (Rescue Mission) provided those who attended with motivation, inspiration, and opportunities to get involved and be engaged in the fight against poverty.
 
sustainability forum flyerSustainability Forum
November 13, 2013
 
In collaboration with Dr. David Campbell, the CCE sponsored a panel discussion that was meant to educate the community about careers and volunteer opportunities focused on sustainability. Panelists Amelia LoDolce, Laura Biasillo, Tarik Abdelazim, and Dr. Richard Rehberg provided those who attended with motivation, inspiration, and opportunities to become engaged in the quest for sustainability. The panelists shared personal stories exemplifying the work they do. Many panelists discussed the importance of small, local change making the true impacts. 
 
gmo forum flyerGenetically Modified Organisms
November 21st, 2013

This community issues forum was designed to give students a wide array of information regarding genetically modified organisms. GMOs are hotly debated in our culture and so many grab on to one nugget of information instead of researching a wide spectrum of thoughts, opinions and data. By presenting two panelists, Dr. Davies from Cornell, and Dr. Andrus from BU, we were able to give students a spectrum of viewpoints in order to make educated decisions moving forward. 

pathways liberal arts flyerPathways to Public Service: Liberal Arts to Public Service
March 12, 2014
 
The first in a series of two Pathways to Public Service Community Issues Forums, this event aimed to show students the diversity of careers -- related to public service -- that a liberal arts degree can offer. Panelists, Danielle Britton, Diane Brown, Sean Cummings, and Chelsea Robertson -- all BU alumni -- agreed that being in the right place at the right time is key to success. Other notable points were made such as the importance of persuasive and concise writing skills, as well as being willing to do a multitude of tasks in order to "prove" yourself and your work ethic to potential employers. In regards to finding a career you are passionate about, Diane and Sean both found their passions in unexpected places and talked about the importance of loving what you are doing. Diane specifically mentioned that once you feel as if your career is no longer providing you with energy and rather taking energy away, it is time to move on and blaze a new trail.
 
grad degrees that make a difference flyer
Pathways to Public Service: Graduate Degrees that Make a Difference
April 1, 2014
 
The second in a series of two Pathways to Public Service Community Issues Forums, this one focused on graduate degrees.  This event aimed to show students the diversity of careers -- related to public service -- that a graduate degree (both traditional and unique) can offer. Our panelists, Katie Olszowy, Merrit Hartblay, and Alison Handy Twang -- all BU alumni -- agreed that graduate degrees--whether pursued right after undergrad or later in life--should be personal and something you are passionate about. Other notable points were made such as making connections and networking with those in fields that you are interested in. The idea of having mentors and agencies that know you and your work ethic and dedication are vital to success. The panelists showed that your education can always be applied in creative ways to do a wide variety of jobs dedicated to public service.
 
marijuana flyer
Legalization of Marijuana
April 30, 2014
 
This forum focused on the societal, physical, and community implications of the legalization of marijuana. Panelists Lina Begdache, Judy Quaranta, and Claudia Edwards offered a comprehensive picture of what the legalization of marijuana -- specifically for medicinal use -- may look like the in the future. Notable points by our panelists included the need for further and long-term research, the need to become responsibly educated rather than rely on emotions and propaganda when voting, as well as the importance of protecting the most vulnerable when considering new and somewhat radical legislation.
 
ice bucket challenge forumDid Your Ice Bucket Challenge Make a Difference?
October 15, 2014
 
During this public forum on the Ice Bucket Challenge, we discussed its impact on the ALS Association, those affected by the disease and the effectiveness of viral marketing campaigns on the nonprofit sector. Do these campaigns really make a difference? What is the best way to help support an organization or cause that matters to you? Panelists included Kathy Lahey, executive director of the ALS Association's Upstate NY Chapter; Ann Cannella, associate program analyst, Charity Navigator; Ryan Yarosh, director of media and public relations at Binghamton University; and Christie Zwahlen, assistant director of the Center for Civic Engagement.
 
immigration forum flyerWho are the Americans of the Future? Immigration, Citizenship and the Dream Act
November 12, 2014
 
This panel discussion focused on the challenges facing immigrants to the US, and the perspective of the "Dream Act" as the most popular legislative initiative to address immigration. Panelists Aja Martinez (Assistant Professor of English), Lisbeth Pereyra (BU MPA Student), and Stephen Ruszczyk (PHD Student, Community Activist) sought to answer questions such as: Why are certain immigrants granted a path to citizenship and not others? Who is being denied access to citizenship and for what reasons? How can YOU become engaged in work with immigrant communities, whether as an activist or through a career in public service?
 

Day of Caring

Day of Caring 2010-present
 
This annual volunteer event is held near the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001, to remember those who lost their lives, commemorate the volunteers and heroes who responded to the events that day, and promote community spirit and development through over 100 service programs. BU supports this initiative that provides great benefit to our community and in the past, our University President has authorized employees to participate without charging vacation time to attendance records. 
 

CHOW Walk

CHOW Walk 2010-present
 
Binghamton University's Center for Civic Engagement and the Broome County Council of Churches host an annual Hunger Walk to raise awareness for the Community Hunger Outreach Warehouse (CHOW), a philanthropic organization that aims to feed the hungry in the Binghamton area. Many volunteers staff the Walk each year, and the Center for Civic Engagement helps to recruit and coordinate all of them. Volunteers help with event set-up, registration and clean-up, and serve as both crossing guards and marshals to ensure the safety of walkers. 
 

The 2012 Presidential Election

Tuesday, November 6, 2013
 
Starting in September, students and staff organized events such as voter registration drives, political talks, forums, and roundtables, concerts and more. Everything culminated in the Tuesday, November 6th General Election, where students gathered by the hundreds to vote in the Old Union Hall. To see the full list of events held between September and election day, visit our 2012 election website. As detailed in Political Science professor Jonathan Krasno's report, 1,719 campus residents voted in the three Vestal precincts that contain Binghamton University's six residential colleges, up 32% from 1,303 in the 2008 Presidential Election.
 

speed dating for service poster Speed Dating for Service

The Speed Dating for Service event provided local organizations with the opportunity to forge a sustainable partnership with a Binghamton University student organization. During the event, students and organizational representatives met for brief periods of time (4-6 minutes) to help identify the best match based on service interests. The idea was that a long-term sustained partnership could lessen the amount of time and effort spent each semester trying to identify and recruit organizations with which to work. This gained time would be better spent implementing service activities, developing projects, and conducting fundraisers.
Several Binghamton University student organizations have already developed sustainable, meaningful, and successful relationships with nonprofit organizations throughout the community. For example, the Boys and Girls Club Mentors student group and the Boys & Girls Club of Binghamton received a $15,000 grant from the Newman's Own Foundation as a result of their strong partnership, which has played an important role in increasing the capacity of the organization.
 

Peru Service-Learning and Language Immersion Program

See the brochure here (.pdf, 730KB)
 
This study abroad summer program has been organized through a collaboration of the Center for Civic Engagement, the Master of Public Administration Department in the College of Community and Public Affairs, and the Office of International Programs. It will combined a course at Binghamton University with 2-3 weeks of on- site language immersion and service-learning in Peru. The 6 credit Binghamton University course linked to this experience abroad in Peru provided an opportunity for students to learn about the dynamics of local development with a focus on the Andean Region in Latin America. It situated local-development practice and its relationship to "sustainable communities" which emphasized the interconnection between environmental issues, economic viability, social equity as well as cultural identity.
 
 
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Last Updated: 11/14/14