Community Service Learning

students painting, volunteer service

The Community Service Learning Program (CSL) offers students opportunities to connect in classroom learning with real life experiences in the community. This is done through both curricular (course based) and co-curricular (open to all students) programs and projects with community partners.

CSL is different from traditional volunteer work and experiential education (co-op, internships, and practicum), in that the focus is not only learning but also service and the beneficiary is not only the student but also the organization served. The goal is to educate students about their roles as engaged citizens and leaders in their communities.

Three key components

Service that meets community needs

The CSL projects are always issue based, meaning they will focus on actual issues and needs identified by the community.

Academic content

CSL is able to enhance student learning by making connections between the theory taught in the classroom and the application of those theories in real-life situations. The community organizations involved become co-educators, providing valuable knowledge and insight into what the students are learning.

Critical reflection

Critical reflection is the process where program participants use their critical thinking skills to analyze their experiences, attitudes, beliefs, and how these were shaped or changed by the project. Critical reflections are done through journal writing, small group discussion, writing analytical papers, and reflective essays.

Co-curricular Community Service Learning

Although similar to curricular Community Service Learning (CSL), co-curricular Community Service Learning occurs outside of your registered courses. Co-curricular CSL projects come in a variety of durations, with different expectations and responsibilities. The following projects are currently on hold, as we are working to redesign our program offerings. Please email the program coordinator to learn about other opportunities at

**The Community Technology Program will NOT be open in Winter term 2021/22

Make a difference in someone’s life by helping them with technology skills. We have a variety of ways to get involved as a technology tutor or workshop leader. Some of the ways you can get involved include:

  • Helping seniors connect with family and friends by teaching or assisting with Skype/email/Facebook.
  • Supporting elementary school kids to learn the basics of coding through in class participation or behind the scenes development. No coding experience required, but if you have coding skills you can help build this new program.
  • Tutoring individuals one-on-one with tablets, computers, or cell phones
  • Being part of a team that leads a six week ‘technology’ course to senior’s on Fridays from 9:30 to 11:00 a.m. starting January 24 through to February 28. We will be focusing on tablets and smart phone use.
  • Supporting seniors who live with dementia through our ‘Music & Memory’ program. Music can calm chaotic brain activity, reduce aggressive behaviors, and enable a person to regain connection to others. Seniors experience these benefits and live an enriched life through a customized music playlist created by our volunteers.


Beyond the Bell Afterschool Program

**The Beyond the Bell program will NOT be open Winter Term 2021/22

This program is located at George Pringle Elementary School. This academic based program takes a holistic approach to the well being of every child. It focuses on helping children from grades two to six keep pace with their grade and their peers. Preferred time commitment is one to two hours a week but they will accept bi-weekly (every other week) participation as well. Must have your own transportation, the school is located in West Kelowna and accessible by bus. Beyond the Bell is operated by the YMCA of the Okanagan.


Are you looking for something interesting to do during reading week this February? Join other UBC students in making a difference in the community by participating in a United Way ‘Day of Caring’ project. We run two projects each day (February 17 to 21) of reading week. You can choose from morning or afternoon projects. Only 50 spots available.

If you think you would like to make a difference and meet new people while having fun volunteering this is a great opportunity for you!

Register now

Questions? Contact us

Robyn Bunn
Student Experience Office, University Centre 329
Email: or
Tel: 250 807 8665 (phone not currently in use, please reach out by email)

Note: CSL programming is being revised, please contact us for more information.