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Tuesday, October 22 • 1:00pm - 1:30pm
Engaged Civic Learning: Just Compensation for Community Expertise

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Providing honoraria for guest speakers is common practice across higher education. Rather than simply a fee for service, these gifts uphold an idealistic vision–a valuing of the knowledge that invited lecturers offer, a contribution to the ongoing project of collective understanding. Similarly, pedagogies involving civic engagement seek out the knowledge of diverse community groups. For these groups’ insights, universities tend to reciprocate through in-kind student or faculty service. The institution’s appreciation for the knowledge that local partners share however, much less frequently takes the form of honoraria.

In this session, we will explore the educational contexts in which honoraria can support partner trust and student learning in civic engagement endeavors. We will examine one model for this practice, an undergraduate Urban Studies course we taught at Rutgers University–Camden in Fall, 2018. The course–New Orleans in-Person: Racial Justice, Po’Boys, and Cultural Appropriation–involved a seven-day trip to New Orleans. On the trip, we arranged a series of engagements with local community organizers and coalitions. While some of these groups might have voluntarily met with our class, others–whose past experiences bred skepticism of outsiders–would have refused. Their preconceived attitudes notwithstanding, we sought to legitimize and value the knowledge of each local organization with which we engaged–we provided honoraria. We found that this practice facilitated access, demonstrated respect, and built a foundation for future engagements between university and community. Through this session, we will examine appropriate contexts for community partner honoraria and the potential benefits and complications.

avatar for Stephen Danley

Stephen Danley

Associate Professor, Rutgers-Camden University

Tuesday October 22, 2019 1:00pm - 1:30pm EDT